At the First Tee of Greater Austin, the mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values, and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. If young golfers earn college scholarships through golf, that’s a bonus. Two of the First Tee’s top golfers will be taking their golf game to the next level next fall. Ben Constancio (Hyde Park Baptist) and Rishi Kejriwel (Westwood) have signed letters of intent to play college golf.
“The First Tee of Greater Austin is all about character development and teaching young people how to build life skills which will help them beyond the program,” said First Tee of Greater Austin Executive Director, Jennifer MacCurrach. “And if they also have a strong golf game or a coach sees potential in their game, First Tee youth are a perfect candidate for a college golf team.”
Constancio will play golf at St. Edward’s University. Kejriwel will continue his game at Rice University.
“Besides athletic talent, coaches are looking for high school athletes who can manage themselves and successfully navigate all that is thrown at them in college, especially golf where college players compete year-round,” said MacCurrach.
Both Constancio and Rishi are First Tee ACE Students, which means they have reached the highest level of achievement in the program. Over the summer, both will be completing ACE projects to join a small fraternity of youth nationwide who have achieved the distinction.
The First Tee of Greater Austin has been serving Austin youth since 1999 and is headquartered at its’ own golf course, the Harvey Penick Golf Campus in east Austin. In addition to its after-school and summer camp program, The First Tee of Greater Austin also hosts its own tournament series called the The Foundation Tour. It also participates in PGA Junior League, a city-wide team competition. The organization provides participation, tournament and secondary education scholarships to its participants.
The First Tee of Greater Austin also works closely with the City of Austin in teaching its program at twelve Parks and Recreation sites. The First Tee also hosts a program specifically for girls, the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program and works with both the Scottish Rite Hospital and the Els for Autism programs to help make the game more accessible to all kids.
To learn more about The First Tee of Greater Austin or email Derrick Elstob, Manager of Programs and Outreach at firstname.lastname@example.org.