COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) — Major League Soccer and the University of South Carolina are teaming up.
MLS announced UofSC is now their official education partner. This means players, former players and MLS staff will be able to enroll in the school’s Carolina Online program.
The new initiative was launched by UofSC earlier this month. Through Carolina Online you can get an undergraduate degree in certain programs without having to set foot on campus.
UofSC President Bob Caslen said the new multi-year partnership with MLS will help develop the school’s online programs.
He said, “The online program reaching Major League Soccer really brings us to the national level and even more so. It also serves a purpose to deliver education to people who have a strong desire to get an education but can’t do a resident model.”
MLS players and staff will be some of the first students enrolled in the new initiative. In turn, MLS will provide UofSC students with exclusive learning opportunities, internships, and a research fund.
UofSC Provost and Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. William Tate said, “We’ll also have a speaker series with athletes, management, leaders talking to the students on how to make it in that business.”
UofSC will also have advertisement opportunities at MLS stadiums and games. Officials said this will help elevate the school’s status on an international level.
MLS Deputy Commissioner Gary Stevenson said this is a unique partnership and doesn’t know if something of this magnitude has been done before with professional sports leagues and a university.
He said this will give their players and staff flexibility to pursue opportunities outside of soccer once their careers are over. According to Stevenson, they polled players and found out many of them wanted to pursue undergraduate and graduate programs.
Stevenson said, “It’s a new program, we’ve never done it before so it’s uncharted territory for us.”
The Carolina Online initiative is open to anyone looking to complete certain degree programs online. You can click or tap here for more information.