What many only dream of is reality for 17-year-old Julia Ridder. The ambitious goalkeeper studies in the United States, where she plays for her team schoolboy in Yuma, Arizona. That Julia now lives in the United States is possible thanks to a scholarship from MADE Scholarships. “For me, the country has always had a certain appeal, because it is bigger and different from the Netherlands.”
Before Julia left for the United States in August 2021, she was part of the selection in the Netherlands Utrecht WomenvFootball Academy (UVVA). UVVA focuses “on highly motivated players” and offers them extra weekly training, in addition to their own club activities. In addition, UVVA has a partnership with MADE scholarships. “On the UVVA blog, I read stories of girls who went to America on a scholarship. It sounded cool to me, so I thought: I’ll sign up and see what happens. “
Choose a school that’s right for you
As soon as Julia registered via UVVA, the ball quickly started to roll. She got in touch with Dennis from MADE Scholarships, after which she got her own profile online. Julia: “This profile has been sent to schools in the United States and Canada. Interested schools could then contact me.
In total, more than twenty schools have expressed their interest. “I researched these schools online and started talking to their coaches. So in the end I chose this school in Yuma, because I felt good there.
Julia signed a one-year contract, intending to extend it for another year. “In the years to come, I hope to develop a lot in football, so that I can go to a university in the United States after that. I really want that. Later I want to be a professional footballer. I will work hard for it. let that happen.
Read more under the photo>
“Girls from America, Germany and Mexico play in the team”
At the time of this interview, Julia is on summer vacation, but that doesn’t mean she can laze around all day. “Football has already started. During the day we all go to the gym and in the evening we practice soccer. Women’s football is more developed in the United States than in the Netherlands. Has my University it is managed in a very professional manner. For example, there is a lot of attention to stretching, and the team has a physiotherapist who can help you if you get injured.
Julia is very enthusiastic about her team. “Everyone is super nice and interested. Especially since I’m new they all want to be there for me and know more about me. If I need anything, I can go see my teammates, so that’s really cool. I’m the only Dutchman, but the team is very international. I play with girls from Germany, England, America and Mexico.
Good memories of UVVA
Julia says she has benefited a lot from the UVVA training sessions. Why is it so? “John (trainer and founder of the academy), in my opinion, is a very good trainer. He takes football very seriously and manages training in a professional manner. I also liked it at UVVA.
Despite the fact that Julia can no longer train with the UVVA selection every week, they still stay in touch. “I still talk to a lot of the girls on the team and I also have contact with John from time to time. UVVA is really in my heart. I was also invited to train with me when I get back to Holland in December, super cool.
Read more under the photo>
Motivated footballers are always welcome
Do you also want to develop your football skills by training with girls as ambitious as you? Then you are more than welcome to UVVA! The training sessions take place at the VOC DESTO and CVV Vriendenraag complex. In addition, UVVA and SV Spakenburg will start the regional training of young Eemland from September 22.
In addition to the weekly training offer, UVVA – in collaboration with UVV Voetbal – offers three UVVA selections. UVVA Mo19, Mo17 and Mo16 have now started to prepare for the new football season. UVVA teams train and play their home matches at Sportpark De Paperclip.
If you want to get to know each other without obligation, you can register for a trial training. If you like it, you can register and participate more often. Weekly training sessions in Utrecht start on September 19th. Finally, a viewing tip: on September 5, UVVA can be admired on SBS6 Holland van Boven.
Do you, like Julia, dream of playing football and studying in the United States? read here find out more about the UVVA and MADE scholarship partnership. John Kaersenhout, founder of UVVA, said: “This year several players signed a contract. There are some with a UVVA background who have now moved to the USA. There are also a number of girls set to take off next year.“
“Introvert. Avid gamer. Wannabe beer advocate. Subtly charming zombie junkie. Social media trailblazer. Web scholar.”