Industry News

Twelve exemplary high school seniors earn selection in to First Tee College Scholarship Program

PONTE VEDRA, Fla. (June 2, 2021) – Twelve high school graduates have been selected to the First Tee College Scholarship Program based on academic performance, length and involvement in First Tee programs, financial need and commitment to volunteerism. This class of scholars includes aspiring engineers, accountants, teachers and environmental activists, all of whom will be attending stand out colleges and universities, including Dartmouth College, University of Pennsylvania, Boston College, Indiana University and other top institutions across the country.

Selected from a national pool of candidates, the Scholars represent diverse backgrounds from communities across the First Tee network. The class is comprised of eight females and four males and 59% are ethnically diverse. The Scholars’ average GPA is 4.19 on a 4.0 scale and hold an average of 1,422 out of 1,600 on SAT and 31 out of 36 on ACT. Five of the Scholars will play on their college’s golf team.

“I offer congratulations and a warm welcome to our new class of First Tee College Scholars,” said Greg McLaughlin, CEO of First Tee. “I am proud to continue First Tee’s support of these students at such an important time in their lives – through their matriculation and beyond. These outstanding young leaders remind us how bright the future is for them and for the industries and communities they will eventually serve. We are appreciative of donors to the First Tee College Scholarship Program who make this program possible.”

First Tee College Scholarship Program extends its impact to alumni by providing support throughout their post-graduate career. Each of the scholars are 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 professional development workshops held in-person throughout the year.

Applications were received from participants at 44 chapters in 28 states across the nation. Following an online application process, finalists were selected by a committee for one-on-one interviews. In addition to academic performance, applicants were considered based on financial need, chapter involvement, volunteerism and other criteria.

First Tee College Scholarship Program is made possible by donors and corporate partners who stand behind the program and First Tee’s mission, including Astros Golf Foundation, Peter A. Bonanni Scholarship Fund, Chevron Corporation, A. James and Alice B. Clark Foundation, Timothy W. Finchem Scholarship Fund, Paul and Ruth Flowers, Morrell Studios, Charles Schwab, TruGreen, Edward and Lisa Vaughan and Delores Barr Weaver Legacy Fund.

First Tee’s College Scholarship Class of 2021 includes:
(Listed alphabetically; all GPAs are on a 4.0 scale)

Claire Alford, First Tee — Central Coast
Santa Clara University
Graduating with a 4.56 GPA Claire has received many honors and accolades for her hard work and plans to major in Public Health and Biology with a goal of attending medical school.

Marion Caldwell, First Tee — Four Corners
Dartmouth College
Pursuing a future in teaching, Marion is passionate about passing down the knowledge she has obtained throughout her life to the children within her community and will major in both English and History.

Natalie Cao, First Tee — Greater Houston
University of Pennsylvania 
Natalie strives for greatness in both the classroom and on the course and will play on the women’s golf team while majoring in economics.

Molly Castle, First Tee — Tennessee
University of Tennessee Knoxville
As a First Tee — Tennessee participant for seven years, Molly has used that experience and her love of golf for helping others within her community. She plans to major in agriculture sciences.

Malisone Chanthapanya, First Tee — Fort Worth              
Texas Wesleyan University
With a cumulative 4.0 GPA combined with her success on the course, Malisone plans to continue her golf career at Texas Wesleyan University while double majoring in computer science and accounting.

Quincy Crawford, First Tee — Greater Washington, D.C.
University of Cincinnati
Quincy has plans to study Aerospace Engineering in pursuit of his goal to create fuel-efficient aircrafts, lessoning the overall carbon footprint and possibly slow the rate of climate change.

Rebecca Jones, First Tee — Indiana
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Rebecca will be studying environmental engineering and plans to use her degree to focus on land remediation and implementing new systems to reduce pollution.

Josh Lendach, First Tee — Triangle
University of Cincinnati
Josh has earned the privilege to play golf at the University of Cincinnati where he will pursue his passions for golf and environmental/atmospheric sciences.

Meghna Mazumdar, First Tee — Connecticut
Boston College
Scoring a 1430 on her SATs while achieving a 4.12 cumulative GPA, Meghna will study Business Economics where she will pursue her passion for investing in the stock market.

Benjamin Nganga, First Tee — Tennessee
Indiana University
A first-generation college student, Benjamin’s 4.46 GPA has earned him the prestigious Fry Scholarship to attend the University of Indiana Kelly Business School where he will double major in Finance and Computer Science.

Kaleb Palm, First Tee — Central Florida
Florida Atlantic University
Graduating with 4.69 GPA, Kaleb will major in marketing and business while playing on the men’s golf team at Florida Atlantic University. 

Borina Sutikto, First Tee — Silicon Valley
Santa Clara University
A nine-year participant at First Tee — Silicon Valley, Borina is graduating with a 4.25 GPA and plans to study Accounting & Information Systems while playing on the women’s golf team.

About PGA TOUR First Tee Foundation (“First Tee”)
First Tee ( is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit youth development organization that is supported by the PGA TOUR. Its 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 inception in 1997, First Tee has expanded to reach more than 3.6 million young people annually through its chapter network, in schools and at youth centers. Headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA, programs are delivered in all 50 United States and select international locations. President George W. Bush serves as Honorary Chair.

Sara Henika
First Tee

Dana Gordon                      
First Tee/BZA PR