As part of the Bay Area All-Star Scholarship Team (BAASST) program, San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Josh Morgan showed up at Gilroy High School today to honor one of its scholar student athletes, Kathleen Miller, with the 49ers Bay Area All-Star Scholarship Team program award.
During Miller's math class, Morgan opened the door, walked in and headed to the front of the class. With all eyes on him, Morgan announced that he was at the school to announce the recipient of this year's scholarship from the 49ers. Morgan's appearance was a surprise to all the students, including Miller, who was nominated for the scholarship by her academic coordinator.
One student in the back of the class even said, "Wow, that's really cool that he's here in our class."
Miller was also thrilled by the experience.
"I definitely was not expecting it at all. I was just sitting there doing my math homework and all of a sudden, big surprise. It was really exciting," said Miller.
Following the announcement, Morgan and Miller spent time walking around the campus together giving Miller the opportunity to ask Morgan, a graduate and football star from Virginia Tech, for advice as a student athlete as she looks to start her collegiate journey.
"It's not that much different from high school because you are still an athlete and you still have to balance your athletics and your school work and you still have to be successful in both so I told her to keep her same routine," said Morgan. "I told her to keep doing what she's doing and never stop using the gift God gave her. God gave her the gift to write so use that for her advantage."
Miller is a senior at Gilroy High School and runs varsity track and cross country and currently holds a 4.31 grade point average. According to the Principal of Gilroy High School, James Maxwell, Miller is the best writer he has ever come across.
"Kathleen is truly exceptional. In my whole career, and this is my 35th year, I have never seen anybody write like her before and she wrote like that when she was a freshman. She is an exceptional, exceptional student. And the fact that she's an athlete and helped our cross country team, the year before this one, we won the honors for the highest GPA in the state."
As a recipient of the scholarship, Morgan also gave Miller a 49ers jersey with her name on the back and tickets to an upcoming Shark's game where she will be honored on the ice along with other BAASST recipients. Each Bay Area professional sports team will honor the winners at a home game during their season this year.
In a collective effort to support youth working towards the goal of higher education, Bay Area professional sports franchises, including the San Francisco 49ers, Golden State Warriors, Oakland Athletics, Oakland Raiders, San Francisco Giants and San Jose Sharks, have teamed up for the 13th year of BAASST. As part of this program, five high school seniors are selected to receive a $3,000 scholarship to be applied toward their college education.
Students are selected from high schools within nine Bay Area counties, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Marin, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma. Each high school was provided with information about this scholarship and was encouraged to nominate candidates that met the following criteria: a minimum grade point average of 3.0, displays leadership qualities in the classroom and/or inspirational qualities on the athletic field and demonstrates the value of education, good work ethic and community outreach.