Anaya Evans, who was a member of the Volleyball Academy, has made history after becoming the first UK athlete to sign for a beach volleyball scholarship in America.
Anaya will study at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona, in 2018 – and has her sights set on the Commonwealth and Olympic Games.
After joining Petroc in 2015, Anaya juggled studying Biology and Art A-levels and a Sport BTEC, alongside the American SATs and GCSE Geography that American universities require, as well as training and competing at an international level.
She said her lecturers helped her to stay organised.
“My lecturers were very understanding of my situation once it was explained to them what my goal was. They allowed me to focus on my sport and organise myself and my studies, with their aid, so that I could succeed at both,” Anaya explained.
She also had advice for current Petroc students who might want to follow in her footsteps.
“The advice I'd give to someone trying to get into an American college with a scholarship is to contact as many colleges as you can with good footage of doing your sport and don't be afraid to keep contacting them.
“I would also say that a lot of colleges are looking for good grades as well as the skills so try to be super organised so that you can succeed at both – be a professional in everything you do.”
(Anaya is pictured signing her GCU contract and playing for England U20s in Sicily).