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Joey Cheek Traveling Athletes Scholarship

Funded by
1 winner$1,000
Application Deadline
Jul 31, 2021
Winners Announced
Aug 31, 2021
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Currently or planning to study abroad

Traveling is a wonderful self-development tool for all athletes.

While training harder and studying film is indispensable to excelling in athletics, travel can provide the perspective and inner equilibrium that helps you take your life and relationship with athletics to the next level.

By extricating you from the values of your own culture, travel exposes you to new modalities of living and engaging with the world and your sport.

Along the journey, you develop a more nuanced and balanced understanding of the human experience. Often, you come away with a greater sense of the interconnectedness of all humans and newfound gratitude for what you have. Plus, you have a great time in the process.

The Joey Cheek Traveling Athletes Scholarship is designed to support an athlete who wants to explore the world outside of the United States. The scholarship is open to undergraduate athletes who are currently studying abroad or who plan to study abroad in the next year. 

Please be advised, you must be enrolled in a US institution and must be studying abroad under one of their programs to be eligible. 

Applicants will need to write an essay on how they plan to use travel to develop themselves as people and as athletes.

Selection Criteria:
Essay, Open-Minded, Travel, Athlete, Ambition
Published March 10, 2021
Essay Topic

How do you plan to use travel to develop yourself as a person and as an athlete?

400–600 words

Winning Application

Ebunoluwa Kalejaiye
Westmont CollegeRancho Palos Verdes, CA
“What are you doing this weekend?” “Are you free to hang out?” “Do you want to see a movie after school?” “Can we hang out more this summer?” To all of these questions, I always answered, “I have basketball and soccer, sorry.” And to be totally honest, I loved the constant games and the practices and even working out with my teammates. Growing up as an athlete gave me structure and a network of friends that I still have today. I already even know that two of my future bridesmaids are two of my teammates from my first club basketball team from when we were all eight years old. Growing up playing sports also allowed me to travel around stateside. I have been to twenty-nine states, including Hawaii, and have had insanely fun road trips with my different teams. I have more athletic gear than I can feasibly wear and I know what to eat and how to work out to stay fit and healthy. I have been forced to learn discipline and how to organize my time well. I follow directions extremely well and as captain of many a team, I can lead with the guidance of my coach. I take all of these skills into my academic life and use them to structure my time and commitments outside of athletics. They have helped me to navigate situations in quick improvisation moments when I have had to think on my feet. Most of the compliments I receive from professors and others are based on actions I do that are derived from abilities that I acquired from playing sports all my life. As great as all of these things are, I never really got the opportunity to develop social skills or have any life experiences outside of the athletic sphere. My dream since I was little has always been to study abroad in Spain but we have never had the funds or the time. I have spent years studying Spanish and now that I am in college, I have the chance to do so. Traveling and studying abroad will force me to become more comfortable in uncomfortable situations and I will get to make friends and play basketball with people in a completely different country! It’s an opportunity I have been waiting for and that has finally arisen despite the global pandemic attempting to sabotage my plans. In Spain, they structure their days differently with siestas in the middle of the day that allow them to recharge for the rest of the day. Adapting to a new way of life will be a great way to learn how to be less rigid in organizing my time and teach me to go with the flow more often. Academically, it is an opportunity to learn every subject in a different language and connect with people of another culture through the lens that they’ve created. Athletically, I get to try new workouts and train in a new place. The new gym discomfort will definitely be amplified but this is an amazing opportunity to get more comfortable in new workout locations before living on my own and having to do it for the rest of my life without a team. Traveling and studying abroad will give me a chance to truly and properly combine my athletic life with the other aspects of my life and enrich both.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is Jul 31, 2021. Winners will be announced on Aug 31, 2021.

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