CHICAGO (Nov. 9, 2015) - Earlier today, a joint statement was issued regarding the fact that a resolution has been reached in the concussion litigation filed in August of 2014 against U.S. Soccer, United States Youth Soccer Association, American Youth Soccer Organization, US Club Soccer and the California Youth Soccer Association.
To provide additional clarification on the joint statement, U.S. Soccer is providing the following details:
PLAYER SAFETY CAMPAIGN
In the statement, it was announced that U.S. Soccer will be releasing a comprehensive player safety campaign in the coming months. The genesis for developing the campaign was unrelated to the lawsuit as U.S. Soccer has been working on a player safety campaign since long before the lawsuit was filed. The campaign was developed with the help of medical experts to provide coaches, players, parents and referees with information, guidance and additional educational materials to improve the management of injuries, including concussions.
The initiative will not only include information about head injuries, but also other important player safety topics such as heat-related illness and injury prevention.
CHANGES TO RULES ON SUBSTITUTIONS AND HEADING
The statement also provided information on specific initiatives that will be implemented soon, including modifications to substitution rules in relation to concussions, eliminating heading for children 10 and under, and limiting the amount of heading in practice for children between the ages of 11 and 13.
These are recommendations for youth members because some of the youth members joining in the initiative do not have direct authority at the local level to require the adaption of the rules. Although these are only recommendations, they are based on the advice of the U.S. Soccer medical committee, and therefore U.S. Soccer strongly urges that they be followed.
U.S. Soccer has implemented these rules as requirements for players that are part of U.S. Soccer's Youth National Teams and the Development Academy. It should be noted that Youth National Teams will continue to be bound by the substitution rules of the events in which they participate.
Protecting the health and safety of athletes and preventing injuries is critically important to U.S. Soccer. U.S. Soccer has taken a lead in education, research and proposing rule changes to improve player safety for several years, and is looking forward to continuing in that leadership position with the release of the player safety campaign.
Some American graduate-degree-seeking students dismiss studying abroad as a tenable alternative to attending a school in the U.S. Jaime Ortega, associate professor of management and MBA program director at Charles III University of Madrid, said via email that he finds students from the U.S. to have "much less information" about schools outside of the country.
This lack of information can deter young adults from expanding their program options to include non-U.S. institutions. Read on to learn about four common myths about earning a graduate degree abroad, and, more importantly, the facts that quash them.
[Here's what to know about global universities' international and regional reputations.]
Myth 1: U.S. degrees are more valuable. Standards of education vary significantly between institutions within the same country, so evaluating a degree from abroad can be tricky. Some U.S. students may be skeptical of the merit of international graduate programs.
But students shouldn't assume a U.S. degree is automatically better.
Many international institutions rank higher than U.S. universities in global rankings. Rachel Howell of Ann Arbor, Michigan, said via email that she considered the University of California—Berkeley, Arizona State University, the University of Maryland and the University of Leipzig in Germany for her master's degree in engineering, but ultimately chose the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands because of its global reputation.
Howell also said via email that the opportunity to integrate her engineering degree with emphases on entrepreneurship, sustainability and international travel finalized her decision. "I was able to arrange to do funded thesis research in Uganda, which was my main expectation in choosing the program." Howell continues to play an active role in organizations in East Africa today.
Students unable to find a graduate course in the U.S. that matches their varied interests may want to expand their search abroad.
Myth 2: The classes will be the same. Countries outside of the U.S. may have entirely different education systems and their institutions can have different academic expectations. Serene Chen says she assumed her Master's in Management program at the London School of Economics and Political Science would be fairly similar to what she had experienced in the U.S.
"It wasn't. I found LSE to be very theoretical and traditional," wrote the Lincolnshire, Illinois, resident in an email. The entire grade for many of her courses was determined by one handwritten, three-hour exam.
Kelsey Howard of North Vernon, Indiana, said via email that she truly appreciates the "broadened perspective of the differences in different systems of education" that she gained while completing her master's in intercultural communication at Anglia Ruskin University in England.
Experts say U.S. students are often not only exposed to new material, but also a new way of thinking and learning. Varied class structures, teaching styles and interactions between professors and students can enhance the experience.
[Get international experience with a global executive MBA.]
Myth 3: International graduate programs are a huge financial burden. While the cost of living may be higher in foreign countries, the degree itself may be cheaper.
Ortega says his U.S. students are generally less concerned about the financial costs of the MBA than other international students. "Their main concern with regards to return on investment is on the benefits inside," he wrote in an email.
While a graduate degree may be relatively cheaper, it can still be a hefty investment. Indiana University graduate Lauren Fitzpatrick, of Indianapolis, worked part time while earning her master's degree in creative writing at Kingston University London. She said via email, "Within a few years of graduating, I paid off my loans in their entirety, while still travelling and living abroad."
Earning an advanced degree abroad may also save students a good deal of time. Many international graduate programs are one to two years long instead of two or three.
[Understand how to calculate the cost of an overseas degree.]
Myth 4: Students must speak a second language fluently. There is no shortage of international universities offering foreign students degrees taught in English, even if the official language of the country is something else. Institutions such as the University of Tokyo, Free University of Berlin and the University of Bergen in Norway provide instruction in English.
Students can capitalize on the learning opportunities that abound in their study abroad destination of choice. Tony Schepers, a midcareer professional from Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a student of Ortega's at Charles III University of Madrid. He said via email he specifically chose to complete his MBA in a Spanish-speaking country so he could continue studying a second language.
Students' short list of potential graduate universities can include institutions abroad. Armed with the truth that debunks the myths of these programs, students can decide more clearly if earning a graduate degree outside the U.S. is a viable option given their academic and career goals.
Ultimately, Ortega encourages students to seek "a program that has high academic quality and improves students' labor market opportunities," regardless of its location.
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