Even before a player signs his first contract, Major League Soccer is committed to supporting every step in a player’s journey, on and off the field.
MLS today unveiled a player engagement initiative that provides valuable resources to players as they progress through their playing careers. From mental health services, to educational resources and career development opportunities, MLS is providing comprehensive support through strategic partnerships with industry leaders that will change the way MLS players approach life before, during, and after the game.
Led by MLS Vice President of Player Engagement, Dr. Jamil Northcutt, the strategy focuses on equipping players to succeed now and beyond the game. Resources and programming are offered to players in seven core areas: Character, Career, Currency, Connection, Cognition,Change, and Care. These areas are elevated through partnerships with best-in-class organizations, such as Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), the official education partner of MLS, AthLife, and Headspace.
In addition, MLS today announces the creation of the MLS Greats Network that will officially launch this week with a celebration around the 2019 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target.
The MLS Greats Network, Major League Soccer’s official alumni group that is open to any player who has ever signed an MLS contract, will serve to maintain the camaraderie and connection between the players, their clubs, and the League, after they transition out of the locker room. During the week of MLS All-Star festivities in Orlando, MLS Greats will not only enjoy hospitality and programming around the annual midsummer showcase, but a group of retired players will participate in a Careers in Soccer Summit (July 26-28) fostering dialogue about careers in the business and sports industry and providing professional development and networking opportunities.
More information on player support resources and the MLS Greats Network can be found here.
“Major League Soccer has developed a stronger pathway to prepare players for success long after they have left the playing field, and we are deepening the connections that players have with MLS, with their clubs, and with each other for years to come,” said MLS President and Chief Administrative Officer JoAnn Neale.
“Through engagement and professional development, we want our players to know that they are always welcome and supported,” said Dr. Jamil Northcutt, MLS Vice President of Player Engagement. “MLS is meeting players where they are in their journeys and providing the resources necessary to help them develop holistically and reach their highest potential.”