Utah Athletics Launches Elevate U Program For Student-Athletes

Jun 17, 2021, 1:31 PM | Updated: Dec 7, 2022, 2:45 pm
Rice-Eccles Stadium - Utah Utes...
This is a photo of Rice Eccles Stadium before the start of an college football game against the Utah Utes and Stanford Cardinal on October 7, 2017 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
(Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The University of Utah Athletics department announced Thursday afternoon that they have launched the Elevate U program.

The Elevate U program will give student-athletes at Utah the tools and education to maximize their opportunity to profit from their name, image and likeness.

This program is in partnership with the David Eccles School of Business and the nationally top-10 ranked Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, which builds on Utah’s Ute Academy student-athlete development program to empower, connect and protect student-athletes at Utah as they build their own personal brands and develop business opportunities.

“We’re very excited about what we have developed for our student-athletes with the Elevate U program,” said Mark Harlan, Director of Athletics. “For several months we have focused intently on the creation of this program, led by Deputy AD & Chief Operating Officer Charmelle Green, and we are very grateful for our partnership with the David Eccles School of Business and the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute to provide our student-athletes with expertise in building and managing their brand and pursuing business opportunities.”

Utah has over 500 student-athletes across all 20 sports programs that will be able to benefit significantly their experience as students at the university.

“We are excited to partner with Utah Athletics to empower student-athletes to capitalize on their incredible branding and entrepreneurial opportunity,” said Taylor Randall, dean of the David Eccles School of Business. “The expertise from the Eccles School and the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute will help guide student-athletes as they build their personal brand and better understand how to best profit from it.”

The Ute Academy was established in 2019 and includes a leadership and mentor program, an incoming student-athlete transition class, network nights and employer site visits.

“I am so excited about the partnership with the David Eccles School of Business and the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute,” Green said. “Combined with our existing Ute Academy programming, this collaboration has been immensely helpful in our ability to create Elevate U, a comprehensive educational program for Utah student-athletes, that will equip them to capitalize on their name, image and likeness. This partnership is essential to our success, and I’m so excited for what the future holds for our student-athletes as they benefit from the creation of Elevate U.”

The head coaches for football, women’s basketball, men’s basketball, gymnastics and volleyball released statements regarding the Elevate U program.

Kyle Whittingham, Football

“The University of Utah and the Salt Lake City area is a perfect environment for our athletes to thrive in promoting their brand through name, image and likeness. With the Elevate U program, our athletes will receive the tools needed to succeed, and we’re excited for the opportunities that our athletes will have to elevate their brand and their game to prepare them for their future.”

Lynne Roberts, Women’s Basketball

“Elevate U is a program that makes competing at the University of Utah a personal brand advantage for our student-athletes. The access and opportunities provided to our athletes by the University of Utah and Salt Lake City will be the best in the country. There is not a better place to be right now than at the U. Elevate U will be the engine that helps drive our talented student-athletes to where they want to go.”

Tom Farden, Gymnastics

“To build a brand for yourself and jumpstart your future is extremely valuable, and capitalizing off your name, image and likeness will provide countless opportunities for our Utah gymnasts to do just that. We are ecstatic for our student-athletes to be presented with even more opportunities to succeed during and after their collegiate careers. I am beyond excited for the Elevate U education program as it is the necessary stepping stone for our athletes to fully take advantage of many opportunities to come.”

Craig Smith, Men’s Basketball

“This is a special time in college athletics. I’m excited that our student-athletes will have the opportunity to monetize on their name image, and likeness as we move forward. Our industry is continually evolving and will always seek to enhance the overall experience of student-athletes. The University of Utah and our athletic department are on the cutting edge in all that we do. Elevate U is another example of being at the forefront of positive change. Elevate U provides our student-athletes the tools of leadership to help them grow and enhance their lives.”

Beth Launiere, Volleyball

“The Elevate U program is another example of the great leadership by our athletics department and the University of Utah. The U is always innovative in ways to enhance the experience of the student-athletes and our partnership with the David Eccles School of Business and the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute will only enrich this program. Our student-athletes are worth the investment, and Elevate U will be a great asset to our incredible student-athletes’ growth as entrepreneurs.”

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Utah Athletics Launches Elevate U Program For Student-Athletes