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WGU and Utah Jazz Award Tuition for One Year to Four Students

News Brief - 4/20/17

Local students awarded a full year of tuition at WGU, a $6,000 value

SALT LAKE CITY — Western Governors University (WGU) and the Utah Jazz teamed up to provide four Utah students with a full year of tuition. Awarded during halftime of the recent Jazz–Minnesota Timberwolves game, the scholarships will allow the students to attend WGU, an online, nonprofit university, tuition-free for one year.

The four scholarship recipients are Alex Draper, of West Jordan; Amber Lorensen, of Pleasant Grove; Michael Morrell, of Provo; and Marcus Renlund, of Salt Lake City.

check presentation All four are new enrollees at WGU and submitted an official entry form earlier in the Jazz season. Draper is earning her bachelor’s degree in business health management, Lorensen is seeking her master’s in nursing informatics, Morrell is earning his master’s degree in educational leadership, and Renlund is pursuing his bachelor’s in information technology.

Learn more about WGU’s scholarship opportunities at and by following @WGU on social media.

Renlund enrolled at WGU because he needed the flexibility of WGU’s IT program while he continues to work full time on the database and software systems of an international supply chain company. He also plans to accelerate his studies and earn his degree faster, an option WGU’s competency-based approach enables.

“Earning a bachelor’s degree has been something that I’ve always wanted to do,” said Renlund. “This scholarship, paired with WGU’s flexibility and competency-based model will allow me to realize my goal quicker than I would at a traditional school, and save me money.”

The majority of WGU students are working adults who benefit from the online university’s flexibility and competency-based online degree programs, which allow students to complete courses on their schedule, advancing as soon as they are able to demonstrate mastery of the material. This, combined with affordable, flat-rate tuition of $6,000 a year for most programs, is making it possible for more students to earn degrees that are helping them advance their careers. More than 5,400 Utahns are currently enrolled at WGU, part of a growing nationwide student body of 80,000.

“The Utah Jazz support the efforts of Western Governors University to provide online educational opportunities with this free tuition program,” said Steve Starks, Utah Jazz president. “Our organization believes in the intellectual and economic value of education and giving students a chance to pursue their dreams.”

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