With the recent Covid-19 crisis, the International Center of European Football has adapted its program in order to ensure student-athlete and staff safety. France and the Greater Geneva area, where the center is located, has already entered phase-3 and is operating normally, with students going to school and players resuming training.
ICEF continues to offer student-athletes its professional residency program at 100%. Since February 2020, when the first wave of Covid-19 cases impacted Europe, the center worked proactively to ensure the health and safety of its students and staff members. The whole team at ICEF was quick to implement additional Covid-19 safety and health measures and maintained constant communication with families for a quick repatriation. Solutions were ultimately developed, to allow student-athletes to continue their schooling and training, through daily online classes and the creation of an online training platform with added communication with the coaches.
Now, upon the center’s reopening in June, the safety and health standards have yet again been reinforced, to provide an even safer campus to all student-athletes for the peace of mind of their families. Student-athletes enjoy a boarding life in a protected environment, in one of the safest regions in the world, at the crossroads of all major European teams. The Greater Geneva area benefits from being one of Europe’s low-risk areas, thanks to a low population density. Switzerland and the Evian-les-Bains region, where ICEF is located, are amongst the safest and healthiest in Europe.
ICEF student-athletes who take part in the 10-month Pro Residency program benefit from a major improvement in their soccer skills and performance, and are able to take control of their education hands-on (with on-site academic programs from Middle School and High School to Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, tutoring sessions, college advising, SAT/ACT preparation, TOEFL/DELF preparation).
And the personal growth doesn’t stop there. Players also acquire important soft skills and develop impeccable work ethic on and off the field. They build unique profiles to stand out and be attractive to professional clubs around the world, as well as prestigious colleges and universities in the U.S., whether they choose to follow a career in professional soccer or choose the collegiate route.
This is why, despite the Covid-19 crisis, Spencer, a talented player from Paris Saint-Germain Academy Florida in the U.S. and his family, decided to maximize his next academic year and follow his football dream in Europe. When asked if it was hard to make the decision to enroll Spencer at ICEF, his mother answered: “It is not hard actually, because I know how passionate he is and how happy he will be. Europe is doing a much better job than the U.S. right now. They are already in phase-3, so I am not scared. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I don’t want him to miss it for anything in the world. On the contrary, I am excited for him to have this experience and feel very confident.”
As a matter of fact, ICEF has reported a peak in late applications and last-minute inquiries due to its professional soccer preparation and boarding options and its ideal location in Europe. A few spots remain available to join the program set to start on August 24th 2020, open to elite players born between 1997 and 2009.The tryout process is fully online: theicef.com/tryouts/