Every year, the Coastal Bend College soccer recruits players from around the world to come to Beeville to represent Coastal Bend College in Region XIV, the toughest conference in the nation. These student-athletes represent 15 different countries and bring with them their own culture, style, way of life, and versatility to the team and the campus.
As part of the recruitment portion, Coach Bobby Njoroge said he lets recruits “know how intimate CBC is, all your teachers know you so it’s easy to build a positive relationship with them and there are other student-athletes on campus, so their peers are going through the same journey and will be traveling. Also, CBC is not too far from 3 beaches where they can spend their free time.”
Some of the countries represented include Brazil, Spain, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Serbia, Germany, Austria, Canada, Mexico, Honduras, Switzerland, and Sierra Leon. Jan Gruhn, a defensive player from Schleidenn, Germany chose Coastal Bend College for the opportunity to play against top competition and the chance to move on with his soccer career to a four-year university. When asked about the best part of CBC, he replied “my teammates and the people.”
With the transition from playing soccer in a country that is home to you, transitioning to another country can be difficult. Jarod Bleibdrey, Assistant Soccer Coach, stated that he believes “fully that growth is obtained through experience, and leaving your home country to travel here and undertake a rigorous season, with coursework to follow, propels our players to reach new levels of mental, physical and emotional heights. The courage the players have to leave their homes and embark on a new adventure, knowing trials and tribulations lay ahead is not a commonly found trait, thus our team is not a commonly found group of players. They push for excellence in everything they do.”
The players have the unique experience to impact their classrooms by sharing their perspective in the classroom offers a different perspective into the discussion including their different sayings, phrases, as well as, a different type of humor. Having other countries represented on campus brings more culture to the campus that is not readily found in the United States, let alone in Beeville. Not only are the students able to come and receive an education, but faculty and staff are able to learn more about different areas of the globe from individuals who have lived and grown up in those areas. Students from the United States are able to see and learn firsthand how similar and unlike education is in other countries. For example, an American student sitting next to an English student in English class may learn that the English don’t spell color; C.O.L.O.R. but rather spells it C.O.L.O.U.R.
As far as the growth of the players, Coach Njoroge said that “some of the students have not only left their parents for the first time but have also left their country for the first time. Coming over alone they have had to learn to deal with adversity, making the starting line-up, even just making the travel squad. They have had to deal with severe climate change, not just living, but also training nearly every day in a new climate. They have to deal with studying subjects that are completely foreign to them (Texas Government/Federal Government). Also, coming over and living with complete strangers. This has built humility, responsibility, and accountability because they have to learn to survive on their own.”
Diversity among students in education directly impacts their performance. Studies show that students work better in a diverse environment, enabling them to concentrate and push themselves further when there are people of other backgrounds working alongside them. This promotes creativity, as well as better education, as those with differing viewpoints are able to collaborate to create solutions.
For more information on recruitment, the upcoming soccer schedule or any other athletic related questions, please visit: