Nathan Skeete is one step closer to living his dream after securing a two-year scholarship to attend North Iowa Area Community College, in Mason City, Iowa.
The fifth-year Combermere student said he was excited to be able to start the next phase of his journey as a student-athlete.
“From young, I always wanted to go overseas and study and be a student-athlete. The best place to do that is the USA because they take that very seriously, so I guess that is what motivated me,” he said.
With the partial scholarship, Skeete would be majoring in Sports and Physical Education at the Junior College, before heading onto a four-year university to complete his studies. And while he was unsure of his final destination, he said he would “take it as it comes”.
The 17-year-old has enjoyed a successful run at Pro Shottas Soccer School, Whitehall Academy and Notre Dame FC, scooping is his fair share of awards on the field, before settling at Weymouth Wales.
Skeete, a utility player, has enjoyed gracing the football pitch as a right-winger, attacking midfielder and a right back. He said his heart was set on playing as a right-winger at North Iowa and chose the community college based on a number of coaches who reached out to him with the best offer at the time.
“I was pretty confident I would get the scholarship because I had my mom’s support all the way. She kept telling me to stay confident because what I think and believe will come true,” he said, smiling broadly.
Skeete has 23 national caps under his boots and has been a part of the National Under-15, Under-17 and Under-20 teams. He was also a part of the team that won this year’s Barbados Secondary Schools’ Under-19 Football League, finishing with a 1-1 draw against The Lodge School.
In 2018, the St Peter resident was chosen as the best local footballer, with the help of his coach Renaldo “Pee Wee” Gilkes, when the Barbados leg of the FLOW Skills Challenge was hosted at the Usain Bolt Sports Complex.
As a reward for his efforts after being adjudged the overall Caribbean winner, Skeete received a visit to Old Trafford, England, to see Manchester United play live at the Theatre of Dreams against Watford. He also visited the Manchester United Museum and enjoyed a personal tour of the Red Devils’ Stadium.
Later that same year, he was part of the then national Under-17 team that created history by being the first national team to engage in a week-long stint of overseas training at Xeneize Campus, Club Atlético Boca Juniors in Buenos Aires, Argentina, organized by Argentina’s Ambassador to Barbados, Gustavo Martinez Pandiani.
And while Covid-19 has forced sports across the world to an abrupt halt, Skeete said he was doing what he could to remain active.
“Football is pretty much my main thing. I don’t play any more sports. It’s good to get to relax, but it’s very weird because I want to go out and have fun with my peers. I still work out every day and stay in shape, but I can’t wait for football to restart,” Skeete said.