Here’s a recap of the types of programs and scholarships available. There are over 10,000 scholarships available in women’s volleyball.
Division I – There are 331 NCAA Division I institutions that sponsor women’s volleyball. Division I women’s volleyball is considered a “head count” sport, which means the scholarships must be awarded in full to one athlete or not at all. Up to 12 full ride scholarships are available per team. A full scholarship covers tuition, room and board, books, and fees. Division I men’s volleyball is considered an equivalency sport, which means the scholarships can be spread among many players per the coaches discretion. Up to 4.5 scholarships are available per team.
Division II – There are 302 NCAA Division II institutions that sponsor women’s volleyball. Division II women’s volleyball is a considered an equivalency sport, and has up to 8 full ride scholarships available. Division II men’s volleyball is an equivalency sport that can offer a maximum of 4.5 scholarships.
Division III and Ivy Leagues – There are 427 Division III institutions that sponsor women’s volleyball. D-III and D-I Ivy League schools do not offer any athletic scholarships. Military academies like Air Force, West Point, Navy, and the Coast Guard are tuition free; however admission requires a congressional recommendation 6 and service requirements. However, athletes at other Division III schools can receive academic or need based scholarships.
NAIA Programs (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics)
There are over 231 NAIA schools that sponsor volleyball and there are no division separations within NAIA. Up to 8 full ride scholarships are available per team. Again, the scholarships can be broken up per the coach’s discretion.
NJCAA Programs: (National Junior College Athletic Association)
Division I – There are 106 schools sponsoring women’s volleyball. Up to 14 full ride scholarships are available per team. Scholarships at the NJCAA Division I level can cover everything including tuition, fees, room, board and books.
Division II – There are 117 schools sponsoring women’s volleyball. Like NJCAA Division I, up to 14 scholarships are available per team. Unlike NJCAA Division I, scholarships at the NJCAA Division II level can cover only tuition, fees and books. Room and board is not covered under the scholarship.
Division III – There are 79 schools sponsoring women’s volleyball. There are no athletic scholarships awarded at the NJCAA Division III level. However, athletes can receive academic or need based scholarships.
Separate from the above junior college numbers for women are the CCAAA (California Community Colleges) and NWAAC (Northwest Community Colleges), many of which have volleyball programs.
NCVF (National Collegiate Volleyball Federation)
There is a very large club volleyball scene with over 150 women’s volleyball programs. No athletic scholarships are offered, but players are still eligible for need-based or academic scholarships, and have the opportunity to play competitive volleyball in college and represent your school.
To learn more, visit: http://ncvfvolleyball.org/default.aspx
NIRSA – The National Intramural and Recreational Sports
NIRSA also has a program and national championships for women’s school club teams. See www.nirsa.org for more information and to see if your school has a club program.
An important aspect to keep in mind is that these figures are the maximum number of scholarships a program can award. If a program awards the maximum this means they are “fully funded,” but not all programs are fully funded. In addition to allocating scholarships, a coach can consult financial aid officers on your behalf to determine what non-athletic aid might be available. However, you should also personally pursue other areas of financial help, and it is your responsibility to research and submit these scholarship opportunities on time.