How can I prepare for my future?
Key Learnings
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The average playing career of a professional basketball player lasts on average 4.5 years; it is therefore essential to start planning for your future at a very early stage.
Identify your interests and explore what you would like to do once your playing career ends. Knowing what you like to do will help you make the right choices for your future.
There are many different options for your further education; take the time you need to choose the option that best suits you and that will help you achieve your long term objectives.
The attributes that you developed during your playing career are a big asset for your future professional life, do not underestimate what your sport taught you, it is invaluable.
Education can be expensive, planning ahead is therefore useful and might be needed in order to make your objectives become reality.

Full-time education options after Basketball


If you decide to focus full-time on your professional development, there are several different educational options that you can consider.

  • University/College.
    • Undergraduate programme. Probably the most traditional form of higher education are three to four-year institutions that offer degrees in a wide variety of areas. Different institutions provide expertise in different degree areas. After completing the programme, you receive a Bachelor’s degree and diploma. Students who receive this degree either enter the workforce or pursue higher levels of education in their field of study (Master’s or Doctoral programmes).
    • Master or Graduate programme. Master’s programmes are typically reserved for students who already have a Bachelor’s degree. The level of training and research is usually higher and you will acquire specialised education in the selected topics.
    • Doctoral programme. Similar to a Master’s programme, doctoral programmes are exclusively available to those who have previously attained a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. Doctoral programmes are research intensive by nature and represent the highest level of formal study in most countries.
  • Trade Schools

A trade school provides vocational education and focuses on teaching you the skills you will need to perform a specific job, with unique emphasis on the practical application of your newly acquired skills. The defining characteristic of trade schools is their application-intensive nature – they give students more hands-on experience in their specific trade than any other form of education.

  • Online education / Distance education

Online education, also known as distance learning or e-learning, differs from traditional education because students are not required to visit an actual classroom and listen to an instructor face-to-face. The convenience of online classes has a direct correlation with its increasing popularity, as they eliminate time restraints in your day.

  • Two-year institutions

Traditional two-year institutions, also called community colleges, are most prevalent in the United States, but do exist in similar forms throughout the world. These institutions are often less expensive than four-year universities and typically offer three types of programmes:

  • Career education. Students receive an Associate’s degree and directly enter the workforce.
  • Industry training. Students’ employers pay for the training and education in specific areas that help the student/employee develop more skills in their job.
  • Transfer credit. Students receive credit for courses taken with the plan of applying that credit toward a four-year, higher-level degree (usually accepted at university/college).