Contact:
Tyler Smies                                                                                                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Executive Director

Office: 616-965-6633
Email: tyler@thefirstteewestmichigan.org

Local teen golfers awarded trips across the country this summer

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – June 24, 2019 – Eight local teen golfers are getting away this summer through trips made possible through The First Tee, a youth nonprofit organization that teaches values, life skills and healthy habits through the game of golf.

The First Tee of West Michigan, one of 175 chapters of The First Tee across the world, has had more students selected for leadership academies in 2019 than any previous year.  Prior to these recent selections, two teens were already selected for a weeklong trip and academy in Naples, Florida in February, competing against other participants from across the country.

Students who attend The First Tee of West Michigan apply for national opportunities, competing against thousands of other participants who attend class at other First Tee chapters. Below is a list of local teens who have been selected this year, where they are headed, and the name of the academy or award they were selected for.  All eight teens play or intend to play on their respective local high school golf teams.

  • Sierra Berlin | Senior, Grandville High School | San Francisco, CA | John Deere Drive Your Future Academy | June 24-28
  • Jorge Garcia | Senior, Wyoming High School | Boise, ID | Joe Louis Barrow Jr. Life Skills & Leadership Academy | July 24-30
  • Alex Karhunen | Junior, Jenison High School | Nantucket Island, MA | Sankaty Country Club Caddie Camp | June 15 – August 20
  • Adam Koval | Freshman, Forest Hills Central High School | Benton Harbor, MI | Nancy Tennant Leadership Academy | July 23-27
  • Bradley Lardie | Freshman, Jenison High School | Benton Harbor, MI | Nancy Tennant Leadership Academy | July 23-27
  • Connor Penn | Sophomore, West Catholic High School | Boise, ID | Joe Louis Barrow Jr. Life Skills & Leadership Academy | July 24-30
  • Shelbie Perski | Sophomore, Ottawa Hills High School | Benton Harbor, MI | Nancy Tennant Leadership Academy | July 23-27
  • Jack Seufert | Junior, East Grand Rapids High School | Ranch Palos Verdes, CA | CoBank Peak Performers Academy, & Wells Fargo Essay Writing Contest Finalist | August 21-24

“We will work with more than 1,000 students at The First Tee of West Michigan this year, and these teens are some of our finest. They are strong golfers, but more importantly exemplify theNine Core Values we teach.  We are ecstatic to have so many selected when the competition amongst their peers across the country is so stiff.  We know that they will represent our chapter well on a national stage while also learning and meeting other students from around the country,” said Executive Director Tyler Smies.

For more information on The First Tee of West Michigan, contact 616-208-1177, email info@thefirstteewestmichigan.org or visit thefirstteewestmichigan.org.  ###

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