TAMPA, Fla. – The United Soccer League (USL) today announced a multi-year partnership with Bellevue University, which becomes the first Official Education Partner of the USL in the organization’s history.
As part of the partnership, Bellevue University will grant a full scholarship to each USL Championship and League One team annually to be awarded to a player to pursue their undergraduate or graduate degrees. Additionally, during year one, the USL, the USL Black Player’s Alliance and Bellevue University will work collaboratively to award a scholarship to a non-profit that benefits minority youth.
“We’re thrilled to partner with Bellevue University and provide these life-changing opportunities across the USL,” said USL Sr. Vice President of Corporate Partnerships & Development, Josh Keller. “So many of our players put their academic careers on hold to chase their dreams on the pitch, and at some point, they will need to start on a new path. Bellevue University’s flexible environment will allow our players to get a jump start at preparing for life after soccer in an incredibly meaningful and impactful way.”
Founded in 1966, Bellevue University is one of the country’s top 20 online universities and has nearly 60,000 graduates worldwide. In addition to providing full scholarships annually to Championship and League One clubs, Bellevue University will offer tuition assistance across the entire USL ecosystem to club and league employees, as well as family members of staff, coaches, and players.
“Bellevue University is honored to partner with the USL to bring professional soccer and innovative educational opportunities to the League clubs and to USL communities across the country,” said Bellevue University President Dr. Mary Hawkins. “As the USL’s Official Education Partner, Bellevue University will help players who are balancing careers and real life demands to achieve their goals of earning a college degree by providing access to the education and support they need to be successful.”
The United Soccer League will also be working with Bellevue University on coursework and curriculum integrations, providing USL guest speakers in the classroom, and exploring mentoring, and league-based internship opportunities. Additionally, the two parties plan to collaborate on a number of community-focused initiatives aimed at uplifting underserved individuals and groups.
“We look forward to collaborating with Bellevue University to help enhance the student experience and curriculum and doing our part to help mold the next generation of executives in the sports industry and beyond,” added Keller.
The league-wide deal expands upon Bellevue University’s existing local partnership with League One club Union Omaha that focuses on providing player and front office educational opportunities and community engagement initiatives.
For more information on USL partnerships, contact Josh Keller at Josh.Keller@uslsoccer.com.
For additional information on Bellevue University and course offerings, please visit www.bellevue.edu.