FONTANA, CA – Summit High School Class of 2023 graduate Sandy Thomas’ excellence in the classroom and on the court has earned him recognition from the Jordan Brand Wings Scholars Program, which awarded him a full-ride scholarship to further his education at his college of choice.
Thomas – a committed student athlete who has competed at the varsity level in both basketball and swim – was awarded the scholarship in front of family, friends, coaches and school staff during a ceremony earlier this spring. Though he was also awarded a full-ride scholarship to UC Santa Cruz, Thomas has decided to attend Cal Baptist University, supported by the Jordan Brand Wings scholarship.
“Sandy came in to our program four years ago, and has been nothing but a pleasure to coach, and nothing but a pleasure as a student,” Summit High School boys basketball coach John Romagnoli said. “He has been a guy who shows up each and every day. I think he has a bigger vision for his life than most kids have when leaving high school. I am super proud of where he is at and where he is headed.”
Despite facing various challenges during his freshman year – both in his personal life and in school, which shifted online at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic – Thomas persevered and managed to maintain a 4.2 GPA. Thomas also found the means to overcome a serious knee injury he suffered on the court during his junior year by joining the school’s swim team, which helped him rehabilitate the knee and stay in shape. His resilience paid off, and Thomas returned to the court in his senior year and led the Summit boys basketball team to the first round of the CIF playoffs.
“When there are tough times in life, I always have my family to lean on,” Thomas said. “Coach Romagnoli has also been there for me as a guide, and he has truly been another father figure in my life. Ultimately, I have two main goals for myself, and that is to be successful and to keep learning.”
Wings, the Jordan Brand's community impact platform, is inspired by Michael Jordan's legacy and commitment to education. Each year, the Jordan Brand Wings Scholars Program selects a small number of underserved students from across the country for its full-ride scholarship. The program, launched in 2015, aims to provide access and opportunities through education so that students can shape their own futures.