First Tee has partnered with RISE to facilitate the national event held July 20-24 in PhiladelphiaST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. (January 18, 2021) − First Tee, a youth development organization that helps kids and teens build their strength of character through golf, will host the First Tee Game Changers Academy Honoring Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. at Holy Family University in Philadelphia, July 20-24, 2021. First Tee teens attending this five-day learning and empowerment academy will participate in critical conversations around issues of identity, racism, equity and empathy. The event will feature engaging and interactive workshops facilitated by RISE, a national nonprofit and leader in the sports community championing social justice and working to improve race relations. The workshops will be paired with introspective activities and reflections led by our nationally trained First Tee coaches and keynote speakers from the sports industry including Philadelphia native and PGA TOUR Chief Legal Officer, Len Brown. First Tee – Greater Philadelphia will host the teens for golf outings at John F. Byrne Golf Course where they will continue to build upon their connections with other participants from around the country and hear different perspectives from their peers. The Academy builds throughout the week into a final outreach project in Philadelphia. “The events of 2020 have reinforced the need for dialogue and to provide a platform for our teens to explore critical topics like diversity, equity and inclusion,” said Greg McLaughlin, First Tee CEO. “Joe Louis Barrow, Jr., has always been an advocate for social justice and I’m proud to carry forward his passion through an event that will empower our participants to be game changers in their community.” This Academy is an evolution of our longest standing participant event, the Life Skills Academy Honoring Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. The enhanced event addresses the challenges our teens face in their daily lives and better equips them to build the strength of character to be game changers in their communities. The Academy honors First Tee’s former CEO, Joe Louis Barrow, Jr., who led the organization from 2000 until his retirement in 2017. “First Tee has and always will be a program that encourages personal growth and life skill development that young people can take with them wherever they go,” said Barrow. “I’m grateful to be associated with an event that will serve as an important platform for critical conversations on the subject of racial equity. I believe it will have a significant impact on the young people who attend, and ultimately their families and communities.” First Tee Game Changers Academy Honoring Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. is one of several national opportunities provided by First Tee headquarters designed to inspire and encourage high school students on a deeper level as they progress through the program and toward higher education opportunities. Ninety-six First Tee teens will be selected for this event via an application process that opens Feb. 9. First Tee is a youth development organization that enables kids to build the strength of character that empowers them through a lifetime of new challenges. By seamlessly integrating the game of golf with a life skills curriculum, First Tee creates active learning experiences that build inner strength, self-confidence and resilience that kids can carry to everything they do. These character education programs are offered at golf courses, schools and youth centers in all 50 states and six international locations. For more information on First Tee, visit www.firsttee.org.
Monterey Peninsula Foundation, PURE Insurance and others unite to donate $500,000 to First TeeST. AUGUSTINE, Florida (Sept. 21, 2020) – While the 2020 PURE Insurance Championship Impacting the First Tee, a PGA TOUR Champions event, was played at Pebble Beach this past week without First Tee juniors in the field due to COVID-19, the positive impact will be felt for years to come thanks to several surprises and a generous $500,000 donation from supportive partners. Monterey Peninsula Foundation, the entity that operates the PURE Insurance Championship, PURE Insurance, and Chevron came together in support of First Tee’s mission through a generous $500,000 pledge that will fund much-needed technology projects for the nonprofit youth development organization. All 70 high school seniors from First Tee chapters who applied to participate in the 2020 PURE Insurance Championship were surprised with a one-time contribution toward college and their names donned on PGA TOUR Champions caddy bibs. All First Tee applicants were invited to virtual experiences that included a video presentation on character values from influencers including professional athletes, actors and politicians, as well as a private concert performance from Train and Pat Monahan. “The donations to support First Tee’s technology efforts are deeply appreciated and will make a foundational impact in our ability to reach and connect with young people from all backgrounds,” said Greg McLaughlin, First Tee CEO. “It will truly have a lasting effect and a shining outcome from what has been a challenging year on many fronts. We are grateful to the Monterey Peninsula Foundation, PURE Insurance and PGA TOUR Champions players who went above and beyond to make the First Tee applicants feel included in this year’s event.” The donation will be used to help First Tee build important digital infrastructure that improves kids’ experience and provides 24/7 access to the program, as well as improve virtual education and training for adults, which is critical for expansion and reaching more kids and teens. In addition, funding from Chevron will go toward supporting select alumni with a financial contribution toward their higher education. “First Tee participants were missed dearly at this year’s PURE Insurance Championship,” said Steve John, tournament director and CEO for Monterey Peninsula Foundation. “The teens have shown resilience in a year of adversity, which reinforces why we support organizations like First Tee that help lift up young people and empower them to build their strength of character.” For the last 17 years, PURE Insurance Championship Impacting the First Tee has provided a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for First Tee teen participants to meet, play and be mentored by PGA TOUR Champions players and amateurs from the business world. Due to the global pandemic, the First Tee teens did not play in this year’s event but were still recognized for their hard work and efforts to qualify for the application process. “We are proud to continue our involvement with this wonderful event and to help support the important work of the Monterey Peninsula Foundation and First Tee,” said Katie Krum, Chief Marketing Officer of the PURE Group of Insurance Companies. “Supporting these incredible young men and women from the First Tee through this sponsorship is tremendously rewarding for our entire team.” First Tee is a youth development organization that empowers kids to build their strength of character through the game of golf. The PURE Insurance Championship is one of several national opportunities provided by First Tee headquarters to encourage and inspire kids as they progress through the program toward higher education opportunities. For more information on the tournament, visit PUREInsuranceChampionship.com. For more information on First Tee, visit firsttee.org.
Though this year’s event will be played without our First Tee participants, this tournament has remained committed to recognizing our participants, their hard work and aspirations. We are grateful to PURE Insurance, Pebble Beach and the Monterey Peninsula Foundation for investing in their futures through First Tee. Learn more about how we provide access to the game and new opportunities through our character-building programs.
President George W. Bush Surprises the ScholarsThe seven high school graduates received the news on Golf Channel’s Morning Drive with a surprise personal congratulatory message from President George W. Bush, Honorary Chair of First Tee. “Your hard work has paid off,” said President George W. Bush. “The coming years will bring new learning, new friendships, new challenges and new opportunities. Remembering the values you have learned through the First Tee will help you for the years to come. Laura and I join your family and friends and recognize you on this special occasion, and we send our best wishes.”
Meet the ScholarsLuke Boldt First Tee – Coastal Carolinas East Carolina University
- Luke has been an active member at his chapter since he was four years old, a grand total of 14 years. In that time, he has grown with the chapter into a leader on and off the course. He has founded a special needs golf program with his twin brother called Buddy Tee.
- He is an Ace-certified participant and Eagle Scout, and will attend East Carolina University, majoring in Public Health with his concentration in Pre-Health Professions.
- He is an East Carolina Scholar, a merit-based scholarship program offered to the University’s top incoming freshmen students.
- When he is not spending time in the classroom, Luke enjoys fishing with his brother and golf and was a participant in the 2019 PURE Insurance Championship.
- Blake, who has been a participant at his chapter for eight years, will continue to pursue golf at Yale while majoring in Economics and Pre-Law.
- He earned Ace certification, the highest level in the program, and volunteers as a coach and mentor to the participants of the chapter in the summer.
- He was the captain and MVP of his high school’s varsity golf team and served as the captain of the Academic Team.
- He credits First Tee with inspiring him to give back to members of his community. He co-founded a charity called Golf For Life in which he a ran a fundraiser to collect equipment and monetary donations for scholarships for the First Tee of the Triad participants raising $50,000 to date.
- Jessica has been a member of the First Tee of Metropolitan New York for more than eight years and has taught golf in the City Parks Foundation over the last two years.
- An Ace participant and first-generation college student, Jessica will attend Georgetown University with a focus in Business Administration and Social Justice/Responsibility.
- Jessica has played golf since the age of nine and earned several awards including: National Science Honors Society, Honor Roll, First Tee A/B Honor Roll, and AP Scholar with Distinction.
- Jessica has a passion for philanthropy. She aspires to help children and has recently started a non-profit organization, The Jessica Jiao Children’s Foundation.
- Ricky has been a member of the First Tee of Tri-Valley since 2017. An Ace participant, he volunteers as a coach and mentor to the youth participants at his chapter.
- Ricky is a first-generation college student, and will attend Harvard University, majoring in Economics. Always working hard to continue to support his community, Ricky aspires to become a leading financial advisor and entrepreneur.
- He is the Salutatorian of the Oakland Technical Class of 2020, and a National Merit Commended Scholar. He is a boy scout and a peer tutor for AP Statistic students while also playing on the varsity golf team.
- Kelly has been a participant at the First Tee of Fort Worth for five years and has been involved as a junior coach and active member of the chapter’s Junior Advisory Board.
- An Ace participant and first-generation U.S citizen, Kelly will attend the University of Texas at Dallas, majoring in computer science.
- Kelly has a passion for all aspects of the science field and was a member of the Rocket Science Club as well as an AP scholar and member of the varsity golf team. She also was an intern at Lockheed Martin during her time in high school.
- Nicole has been a participant at the First Tee of Miami for more than five years, serving as a junior coach and counselor while also an active member of the First Tee Junior Advisory board.
- Nicole, an AP Scholar with Distinction and a National Hispanic Scholar will attend Duke University, majoring in Pre-Med, Biology. She aspires to be an NFL team doctor.
- A two sport athlete in both golf and track, during her time in High School she directed the First Tee of Miami High School Prep Bootcamp, a camp that focused on young athletes providing help with schoolwork, time management organization and prioritization; Nicole offered guidance and served in a mentorship role.
- She also serves as the founder and director of “Box It Tournament,” a tournament that Nicole put together to raise money for a local homeless shelter; she was responsible for fundraising, sponsorship and advertising and helped raise $6,000
- Sara has been a member of her chapter for the past seven years she will attend the University of Florida, and major in Health Sciences and International Studies.
- Sara attended First Tee’s national participant event, the Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. Life Skills and Leadership Academy, in 2018 where she was awarded the Renee Powell Outstanding Female Leader Award.
- The captain of her high school golf team, she is also a Recipient of the National Security Language Initiative for Youth Scholarship to study Arabic abroad as a representative of the U.S.; traveled to North Africa to learn Arabic in 2019.
- Remi has been a participant of First Tee of Metropolitan New York for nine years and served as an Ace Scholars Tutor and junior coach.
- An Ace participant, she will attend Emory University, majoring in Biology and Human health. She aspires to attend medical school and become a doctor dealing with infectious diseases at the CDC or WHO
- An AP Scholar with honors, Remi is the team captain of the golf team and dances Ballet Modern and Jazz in her free time. She also is the Director of Public Relations for high school’s Girls Learn International chapter, empowering middle and high school students to advocate for human rights, equality and universal education in the U.S. and around the world.
- Denise has been a member of the First Tee of San Francisco for the past eight years and has served as a junior coach over the last two years. She also had the opportunity to play in the First Tee Regional Cup when she was in 6th grade.
- Denise played golf competitively in high school and local tournaments and earned several awards including: Future Grads Award, AP Scholar and Bronze Medal AAA for the CIF SF Section Girls Golf.
- Denise is a first-generation college student and first-generation high school graduate. She will attend University of California, Irvine, and will major in Business Administration.
- She is very excited to pursue a career in accounting. Denise plans to complete a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration-Accounting and Finance, an MBA and then aspires to work with PwC.
About the ProgramThe First Tee College Scholarship Program extends its impact to alumni by providing support throughout their post-graduate career. Each of the scholars will be paired with a dedicated, trained adult mentor who will help encourage and guide them throughout the college experience, including virtual and in-person meetups. The program also provides scholarships up to $5,000 per year for four years, plus professional development workshops held in-person throughout the year. In addition, scholars will receive assistance with internships and full-time employment placement post-graduation. First Tee is a youth development organization dedicated to providing active learning experiences that empowers young people to build their character through the game of golf. The First Tee College Scholarship Program is open to active participants of First Tee chapters graduating from high school who meet the minimum requirements. Applications were received from participants at 32 chapters in 24 states across the nation. Following an online application process, 10 finalists were selected by a committee for one-on-one interviews. Applicants were considered based on financial need, academic performance, chapter involvement, volunteerism, community service and other criteria.
Grand Prize Winner: Raymond Jin, First Tee of Greater TrentonRaymond first became involved with First Tee through his mother’s friend. Nervous and a bit shy, Raymond was naturally reluctant. But it turned out to be one of the best decisions he’s ever made. “As I progressed through the program, First Tee completely changed me as a person. Before, I was a shy little boy hiding behind my parents’ back. Now, I’m able to interact and form lasting relationships with people from all walks of life. I now embrace unconventionality and uncertainty and thrive in new and unfamiliar situations. Because of First Tee, I am able to make a difference in the lives of young people and those in my community. I am passionate about working with people and mentoring.” Involved with First Tee of Greater Trenton for six years, Raymond now serves as a junior coach mentoring young kids in the program. Outside his time with First Tee, he also has a budding career as an amateur musician. Competing as a classically trained violinist, Raymond was a competitor on China’s Got Talent, and finished second in the junior division. He also is a concertmaster and member of the All-State Orchestra. He has had internships with New Jersey Assemblyman Daniel R. Benson is also a Scholastic Gold and Silver Key in photography. He’s currently a junior in high school and his immediate goals include getting into college majoring in managerial business or financial engineering, with the goal of opening up his own business to serve underserved communities through professional development initiatives. He values the foundations of mentorship provided to him at First Tee of Greater Trenton and the meaning it has brought to his life. “I now understand the value of discovering talent in unorthodox places. Today, my students are my chief source of inspiration and constant, tireless improvement as a student, athlete, artist, musician, leader, mentor and citizen in the 21st Century. My students’ struggles are my test of strength, and their willingness to learn and ceaseless energy are the only compensation I need for a lifetime of public service.” Read Raymond’s essay that earned him a spot in the Wells Fargo Pro-am.
Jalyn Robinson, First Tee of Greater Sacramento (First Prize Winner)
Jalyn didn’t start seriously thinking about golf until sixth grade. It was then that she learned about the inviting nature of First Tee. “My mom and I were drawn to First Tee because you didn’t have to have a history with golf to be part of the program; plus, it wasn’t just about the technicalities of the sport. We participated in fun challenges, games and events. I had the chance to make amazing friendships.” As Jalyn has progressed through the program, she steadily transitioned to a leader in the program and credits First Tee with giving her the opportunity to create meaningful, personal friendships that have withstood the test of time. Jalyn dreams of playing collegiate golf, but certainly understands the challenges that can bring. She has learned to embrace those difficult challenges. “First Tee taught me to embrace failures because they are going to happen. How you choose to deal with that failure is what will truly impact you. First Tee not only taught me how to embrace my failures on the course, but also how to analyze, learn and move on from tough experiences off the course.” Jalyn also credits her mother with the encouragement that has led her to success. “She has always given me a listening ear, caring heart and comfortable shoulder to cry on when things are difficult for me to handle. Because of her, my passion to be the change I want to see becomes vivid each day.”
Kayli Lucas, First Tee of Tennessee (First Prize Winner)Kayli was first introduced to First Tee from a church friend in sixth grade. Before entering First Tee, Kayli was introverted and says she had low self-esteem. As she progressed through the life skills and golf curriculum, she felt her demeanor change. “I wanted to be adventurous and try new opportunities, but my confidence did not match my ambitions… I had finally found a place to grow and express my interests. The camaraderie among participants and coaches is unparalleled at First Tee. As I began to mature and find myself as a person, I was supported and guided by those around me, and simultaneously, I was able to do the same for others.” Gaining self-confidence changed Kayli’s life. “I initially did not pass ‘Par’ after my first time attending the course, but the process of retaking and passing ‘Par’ taught me that a lack of confidence was my only limitation – not the opinion of others. After this pivotal event in my life, I began to flourish and break out of my shell in all aspects. As a student, I embraced my unique qualities and began to excel in not only the classroom, but also in social settings. I began to confidently express myself and develop friendships with everyone I met. On the golf course, my game entered an entirely new level. My newfound confidence and work ethic advanced me to enter the ACE Program at the start of my freshman year of high school.” Kayli played on the varsity golf team throughout her high school career, leading them to the regional tournament for the first time in the school’s history. She will attend the University of Alabama in the fall, majoring in biology. Though she doesn’t yet know her long-term career goals, Kayli hopes to continue her journey with First Tee by turning to her peers and mentors for counsel when faced with challenging decisions.
Maya Hunter, First Tee of Benton Harbor (First Prize Winner)Maya began her First Tee journey at a very young age alongside her brother. Their local chapter had recently opened a location in their area. Even though Maya had never played golf before, her mother signed her up for a summer program. That summer program quickly turned into something more as she progressed through the program, falling in love with golf and the life lessons learned through First Tee. “The core values and everything else I learned positively impacted my life in many ways. Many of the lessons were easy to take into everyday life, like a simple confident handshake or earning and giving the respect we all deserve.” Maya recalls a time in her golf career where honesty was more important than winning. “Honesty is a true judge of character. If I can keep a reputation of honesty on the course and in life, which is quite hard sometimes, I believe I will be a step ahead of everyone at my level. I may not be physically better, but I am willing to make a hard decision to stay true to my moral code of honesty.” Maya will be entering her senior year of high school this fall. She hopes to win regionals and a state title and earn a full scholarship through a caddy program to a top university.
These four winners will attend the 2021 Wells Fargo Championship. As the Grand Prize Winner, Raymond will experience the thrill of playing golf with the PGA TOUR professional of his choice during the tournament’s pro-am. Thank you, Wells Fargo for your longstanding partnership and support of First Tee. Wells Fargo has renewed their commitment for the next five years to support First Tee’s youth development program. Thank you to all applicants, and congratulations to all finalists!
- The 17th Hole Challenge presented by Morgan Stanley, Grant Thornton and Optum: First Tee is about building character and using that inner-strength to take on new challenges in life. Throughout the week, guests can demonstrate their self-confidence on a replica of the famed par-3 17th at TPC Sawgrass. Fans will have the option to purchase a third shot or a First Tee Fast Pass, with proceeds benefiting First Tee of North Florida. Located in THE PLAYERS Welcome Experience at the Nicklaus entry, high-profile influencers and celebrities are known to stop by to take the challenge.
- Youth Clinic with PGA TOUR pros: On Monday, March 9, a youth clinic will take place with participants from the First Tee of North Florida and PGA TOUR professionals, in conjunction with Nike, at the 17th Hole Challenge. Media are invited for the purposes of covering the event and must apply for tournament credentials by February 28 at pgatourmedia.com.
- Girls Golf Mentoring Event: On Tuesday, March 10, Morgan Stanley – one of THE PLAYERS Championship’s Proud Partners – will host girls from First Tee of North Florida in a private event focused on mentorship and financial literacy with LPGA professional Cheyenne Woods and local Morgan Stanley leaders. Media are invited for the purposes of covering the event and must apply for tournament credentials by February 28 at pgatourmedia.com.
- Featured Charity of the Day: On Wednesday, March 11, First Tee will give away free bag tags to the first 5,000 fans and will be featured onsite throughout the tournament and on THE PLAYERS digital channels.
- Cola’s Reverse Vending Machine Benefiting First Tee: Fans can demonstrate their commitment to the next generation by recycling all plastic bottles throughout the week in Coca-Cola’s ‘reverse vending machine’ in Stadium Village. With each recycled item, Coca-Cola will automatically donate to First Tee of North Florida.
- Featured First Tee Participants and Alumni at THE PLAYERS: Throughout the week, First Tee of North Florida participants will be experiencing the event, many for the first time, and First Tee, First Tee of North Florida and THE PLAYERS will spotlight their engagement on digital channels. Bios and quotes are below.
1.Opportunity to Further Develop Your Strength of CharacterExperience elite competition that will put you to the test and showcase your inner strength, self-confidence and resilience required to compete at the next level.
2.The “College Experience”First Tee National Championship provides much more than playing in a 54-hole stroke-play event. Take part in the “college experience” including dorm-living, an official Clemson University campus tour, capped off with dinner at the West End Zone Club of the football team’s Memorial Stadium.
3.Exemption into the PURE Insurance Championship Impacting the First TeeThat’s right! The winners of each male/female division will earn an exemption into the PGA TOUR Champions’ PURE Insurance Championship held at Pebble Beach Golf Links this September.
4.Connect with Friends and Elite PlayersSpend time with peers who are pursuing a similar path and can become a future go-to team as you take on new challenges and explore opportunities within golf.
5.Premier Challenge for the Competitive GolferThis tournament promises heightened competition and an exciting golf environment. It will bring the most elite First Tee athletes to compete for the Tattersall Cup. A great addition to your resume! Ready to apply? Click here for more information on the First Tee National Championship.
- Kicking off our inaugural First Tee National Championship hosted at Clemson University June 21-26, 2020
- Watching a participant demonstrate confidence as he or she plays alongside a PGA TOUR pro through the Wells Fargo Succeeding Together Contest
- Celebrating chapter anniversaries and the long lasting impact they’ve had in their communities
- Empowering girls to build their inner strength and set goals to prepare for their future during the John Deere Drive Your Future Academy
- Welcoming new schools and youth centers across the country which bring new opportunities and exposure to the game of golf through First Tee National School Program and DRIVE.
- Pairing veterans and First Tee participants in a Presidents Cup Style event at the Perfect Sense Unified Challenge
- Supporting participants with their collegiate aspirations with the John Deere Power For Good Scholarship Contest
- Launching the First Tee College Scholarship Program featuring a wrap-around experience to support alumni throughout their college career.
- Providing a life-changing experience for participants focused on building their character at the Joe Louis Barrow, Jr. Life Skills & Leadership Academy
- Enjoying an inside look at what it’s like working at one of the largest corporations in the world during Coca-Cola America’s Future.
- Playing golf on National Golf Day
- Celebrating those who reach the pinnacle of First Tee, through our ACE program.
- Participants demonstrating their values and character while competing on the national stage at Pebble Beach during the PURE Insurance Championship
- Bringing teens together at the Youth Leadership Summit
- Interacting with kids and families during the U.S. Open
- Golf’s return to the XXXII Olympic Summer Games
- Expanding our First Tee Alumni program
- Watching First Tee participants at Augusta National for the Drive, Chip & Putt competition
- Impacting millions of participants across the world.
- Empowering our youth and teaching kids honesty, confidence and goal-setting to ensure a brighter future.
72 First Tee teens to compete for Tattersall Cup in elite tournament at The Walker Course on June 21-26ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. (Jan. 9, 2020) – First Tee announces the first-ever First Tee National Championship will be held June 21-26, 2020 at Clemson University. The event will bring together First Tee’s elite players for an opportunity to showcase how the program has helped build the strength of character needed to play at the collegiate or next level. The winners of each girls and boys’ division will be awarded with the Tattersall Cup named after First Tee Trustee, Fred Tattersall. Each winner will earn an exemption into the PGA TOUR Champions’ PURE Insurance Championship Impacting the First Tee held at Pebble Beach Golf Links September 18-20, 2020. “We are excited to announce the First Tee National Championship and play our inaugural event at Clemson University,” said Greg McLaughlin, First Tee president. “Our goal is to provide each participant with a college level experience both on and off the golf course. We are thankful to longtime First Tee supporter Fred Tattersall for creating this opportunity for the young people in our chapter network.” First Tee National Championship will be held annually at various college campuses around the nation providing First Tee participants the opportunity to network with participants from across the country and take in the “college experience” including dorm-living, campus tours and more. Clemson University’s The Walker Course is set to host the inaugural Championship. Applications for First Tee participants will open January 28. Applicants will be selected based on their golf skill, competitive golf experience and handicap. First Tee is a youth development organization dedicated to helping young people build character through the game of golf. The National Championship is one of more than 10 national opportunities provided by First Tee headquarters to empower and motivate teens as they progress through the program and toward higher education opportunities. For more information on the tournament and First Tee, visit www.firsttee.org. *** About First Tee First Tee (www.firsttee.org) is a nonprofit youth development organization whose mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character and instill life-enhancing values through the game of golf. Since its beginning in 1997, First Tee has expanded to reach millions of young people on golf courses, in elementary schools and at other youth-serving locations. Its headquarters are in St. Augustine, Florida, USA, with programs in all 50 United States and select international locations.