The investment in UVU student athletes is paying off

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Part 3 of 3 in a series regarding the finances for UVU athletics

There are many people who might say that money should go to other places first before it goes into the athletic department. They might complain that the teams aren’t winning enough or that there are more important things that money could go toward. A fine arts building, a classroom building, a new student center, or other educational environment might be better suited for that money.DSC_8568

What those people might not realize is that the budget the athletic department receives isn’t just to build new facilities, travel expenses, and other various items. It is to help a student-athlete earn his or her degree through scholarships and other forms of financial aid.

“Our student-athletes aren’t just coming here to play sports,” UVU Associate Athletic Director Jared Sumsion said. “They are coming to get their education and it is part of our responsibility to see that they receive one. There are scholarships provided in the Communication department, the Business department and so forth. We try to set up the same type of scholarships based on what donors require of us and what student-athletes are in need.”

Here are a couple of stats to validate this. The overall grade point average of the UVU athletic department for the spring semester of 2015 was 3.33. In Spring semester 19 student-athletes, or six percent of the total student-athletes at UVU,  received a 4.0 GPA. 257 student-athletes finished the term with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.

“It just goes to show that the student-athletes are taking the investment we put in them seriously,” Sumsion said. “They want to do well both on and off the court and that helps us as a program grow and achieve greatness.”

There were 120 UVU student-athletes who were named to the Academic All-WAC team for the spring semester in 2015 and 212 for the entire 2014-15 school year._D4S1885-as-Smart-Object-1

“The more the student-athlete invests in their studies, and doing well in the classroom, the more the alumni will want to come back and give back to the school,” Sumsion said. “We aren’t a school where we just want to win on the field or the court. We want to win in the game of life and it makes our job easier when we have athletes who want those same things.”


Photos courtesy of Preston Yardley, Gabi Campbell & Byron Harward