The MCC Universities scheme covers six centres and 13 learning institutions.
Not even the finest county academy has a 100% success rate in guaranteeing professional cricket to all its charges, so good players that fall short can be left with neither a future in cricket nor the qualifications to pursue a career elsewhere.
The MCCUs offer the best environment to excel on and off the sporting field, and the opportunity to obtain a degree which will be valuable whether the dream of professional cricket becomes reality or not.
They are based in Cambridge, Cardiff, Durham, Leeds, Loughborough and Oxford, and incorporate a total of thirteen institutions. They offer hundreds of courses for students of all academic levels, and, critically for the aspiring cricketer, some of the best coaching and facilities available anywhere in the country.
Most importantly, the MCCU scheme works.
Around a fifth of all English-qualified players in the county system attended an MCCU, and several current high profile players (including Monty Panesar) are graduates.
MCCUs don’t just produce good cricketers, they produce strong leaders and rounded characters - and those traits are important for success both in cricket and the wider working world.
Angus Porter, CEO of the Professional Cricketers' Association, on the role of MCCUs