Colleges are always looking for way to attract top athletic talent. How about some top educational equipment? The University of South Florida is giving each one of its student athletes a MacBook Pro according to an announcement today. Missouri’s journalism school can’t be pleased!
“The goal is to create an anywhere, anytime learning environment for each of our student-athletes,” said USF Director of Athletics Doug Woolard. “Apple’s MacBook Pro will assist in providing comprehensive academic support services while accommodating the demanding practice and travel schedules of our student-athletes. Our traveling teams will now be connected to classes, academic advisers and tutors anywhere in America, or for that matter the entire world.”
“We’re thrilled to be working with Apple and leveraging its more than 30 years in education,” said University of South Florida President Judy Genshaft. “Our use of innovative technology will directly improve the educational opportunities for the more than 460 student-athletes enrolled in over 2,400 different courses each semester.”
As part of the program, USF will be adding new lectures to iTunes U, the section of Apple’s music- and video-download service where educational material is posted.
The university declined to put a price tag on the program, but a spokesman said that the cost of providing the MacBooks for the spring semester was in the “six figures,” even after a special Apple discount.
According to NCAA rules, the computers will remain the property of USF and will be checked out from and returned to the athletics department at the start and conclusion of each semester. The rules also prohibit students from endorsing or recommending Apple products or services.
And if some students would rather use their Windows or Ubuntu machines than a MacBook Pro?
“All student-athletes will receive one if they chose to accept,” says Chris Freet, USF assistant director of athletics. “Right now, we won’t force them to move away from their existing computer if they are reluctant to use the MacBook.”
All athletes pictured with their laptops below: