ALL NEWS

WATCH: Utah Jazz surprise first scholarship recipients in heartwarming video calls

May 20, 2021, 7:39 AM | Updated: 7:45 am
utah jazz scholarship facetime video...
The Utah Jazz surprised some of their scholarship recipients with Facetime calls sharing the news. Screen grab from Utah Jazz Tweet.

SALT LAKE CITY — One of the recipients of a new full-ride scholarship from the Utah Jazz says it will change his life.

The Jazz are awarding one scholarship for every win to a student from a minority or under-represented group. They’ve had 55 wins so far in the regular and preseason, with the chance for more in the post season. They’ve selected 30 students so far who may have otherwise not had the opportunity to go to college.

On Wednesday, the team shared video of players telling some of those students about it. 

The video shows Donovan Mitchell, Rudy Gobert, Joe Ingles, Mike Conley, Royce O’Neale, Jordan Clarkson, Derrick Favors, and Georges Niang Face-timing the students with the good news.

One of those students is Makuei Laeth.

Laeth told KSL TV getting the call from one of his favorite players Jordan Clarkson, shocked him. But learning he won a four year full-ride scholarship was an even bigger surprise.

“I just got to thank God,” he said.

Jazz scholarship puts college in reach for Sudanese student

He came from the Sudan to live with his brother’s family.

“What brought me to Utah was basketball, getting the chance to play at Juan Diego,” he said.

Besides playing sports, he has been working several jobs, including at a Jazz team store.

Now he will be the first person in his family to go to college.

The Utah System of Higher Education says there is a gap between the number of students from ethnically diverse groups in Utah high schools and the number of those students who go on to post-secondary education. So this program tries to help close that gap.

NBA.com says Hundreds of students applied for the scholarship, and the nonprofit organization 10,000 Degrees selected the winners.

Of the first 30 Utah Jazz Scholarship recipients:

  • 100 percent demonstrated financial need
  • 90 percent will be first-generation college students
  • 53 percent are women
  • 47 percent are men

The scholarship recipients have all been accepted by one of six Utah universities:

  • Brigham Young University
  • Southern Utah University
  • University of Utah
  • Utah State University
  • Weber State University
  • Utah Valley University

Read more: Utah Jazz allowing more fans for the playoffs, but masks are still required

Today’s Top Stories

All News

After six years leading USU, and an overall 32 year career with the school, President Noelle E. Coc...
Simone Seikaly

USU President Noelle E. Cockett will step down

USU President Noelle E. Cockett has been part of the college's community for 32 years.
6 days ago
A national survey finds Utah the third safest state when it comes to drunk driving fatalities....
Simone Seikaly

Utah one of the leading states for low levels of drunk driving

SALT LAKE CITY — Forbes Advisor has ranked American states to determine which have the highest number of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes. Their results put Utah third in the nation for the lowest rate of drunk driving. The District of Columbia and New Jersey each ranked higher than Utah when considering this data. […]
6 days ago
free transit rides...
Elizabeth Weiler

Free public transit rides come to Heber Valley

HEBER CITY, Utah — In the summer of 2022, Wasatch County Council approved a sales tax which is now providing funding for free public transit rides throughout Heber Valley.  Wasatch County and High Valley Transit entered a three-year, $3 million agreement to offer public bus transit services between Wasatch and Summit Counties, along with micro-transit […]
6 days ago
carbon monoxide poisoning...
Ali Litzinger

Carbon monoxide poisoning on the rise in winter months

SALT LAKE CITY — Winter is approaching and officials want people to know the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. Last year, nearly 200 Utahns were treated for carbon monoxide poisoning.  The flame in a gas appliance should generally be blue, with some orange. If the flame is mostly yellow, it’s giving off excess carbon monoxide.  […]
6 days ago
nichole olsen was shot and killed outside a nightclub in dowtown salt lake city over the weekend....
Elizabeth Weiler

Man arrested for murder in weekend shooting outside nightclub in Salt Lake

SALT LAKE CITY — A Southern Utah man has been arrested and booked into jail in connection with the shooting death of a Salt Lake City woman over the weekend. Nichole Olsen, 29, was shot and killed outside a nightclub near 300 S. West Temple in Salt Lake City around 2 a.m. Sunday. Police have […]
6 days ago
A “for sale” sign is displayed outside of a house in Layton. 
Photo: Shafkat Anowar, Deseret Ne...
Adam Small

Salt Lake seeing highest drop in home sales, national report finds

Utah's home sales are dropping fast according to a new national report. Prices have dropped by 48% in the last 12 months.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The best tools for Deaf and hard-of-hearing workplace success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
christmas decorations candles in glass jars with fir on a old wooden table...
Western Nut Company

12 Mason Jar Gift Ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas [with recipes!]

There are so many clever mason jar gift ideas to give something thoughtful to your neighbors or friends. Read our 12 ideas to make your own!
wide shot of Bear Lake with a person on a stand up paddle board...

Pack your bags! Extended stays at Bear Lake await you

Work from here! Read our tips to prepare for your extended stay, whether at Bear Lake or somewhere else nearby.
young boy with hearing aid...
Sorenson

Accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing

These different types of accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing can help them succeed in school.
Young woman receiving laser treatment...
Form Derm Spa

How facial plastic surgery and skincare are joining forces

Facial plastic surgery is not only about looking good but about feeling good too. The medical team at Form Spa are trained to help you reach your aesthetic outcomes through surgery and through skincare and dermatology, too.
WATCH: Utah Jazz surprise first scholarship recipients in heartwarming video calls