PGATSS Awards FTSV $25K Teen Innovation and Retention Grant

First Tee – Silicon was one of 10 chapters selected for an exciting new grant. The Teen Innovation and Retention Grant will help First Tee chapters in PGA TOUR Superstore markets focus on the retention during the critical teenage years. First Tee is thankful for the support of PGA TOUR Superstore and together we will build experiences that build character to empower kids through a lifetime of challenges. PGA TOUR Superstore and The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation have supported First Tee for more than a decade, helping First Tee grow from reaching 260,000 kids in PGA TOUR Superstore markets in 2011 to more than 1.5 million young people in 2019. The $25,000 grant will support our existing initiatives and allow us to expand upon them, including:
  • Participant Advisory Committee – form a teen leadership committee which provides input for our staff and Board to create more engagement, interaction and commitment
  • Birdie/Eagle STEM – purchase STEM demonstration related gadgets/products for our developmentally appropriate STEM class curriculum which uses golf activities as a way for our teen participants to explore how science, technology, engineering, and math connect to and impact our Nine Golf Fundamentals. STEM classes are set to a problem-solving framework which fosters critical thinking and a deeper understanding of golf while inspiring STEM careers.
  • New Technologies – Purchase carts and other equipment to begin using two Telepresence (TP) Units donated by Cisco.These technologies will first be used in teens classes, including STEM. The TP Units are a combo of “Zoom and iPad” for advanced coaching.
  • Golf Treks – provide unique opportunities for teen participants to play golf with donors and Board members, including quarterly Board Outings to create more engagement and interaction. Our goal will be to match up teen participants with adults working in fields they are interested in to provide career development and mentoring exchanges.
  • Coaching – increase instruction ratio in all existing teen classes and fund the expansion of an additional teen class to ensure that we attract/retain teen participants by offering a higher level of mentoring to prepare them to become candidates for First Tee opportunities, including PGATSS Leadership Series.
FTSV’s teen program is a safe haven that provides structure, direction and intentional mentorship addressing the epidemic of high school dropout rates, aggressive antisocial behaviors and childhood obesity. We fill the opportunity gap and provide inclusion for all teens experiencing challenges associated with poverty and ethnicity in a region with the nation’s second most diverse area. Learn more about getting your teen involved in our program.