Owner Mark Seabrook and his crew at the Canadian Golf & Country Club in Ottawa`s west end had the parking lot clear for the twenty-five local junior golfers and their parents who braved the aftermath of a brief winter storm to attend a Golf Association of Ontario (GAO) scholarship seminar on Saturday, February 25.
Golf Association of Ontario Executive Director Dave Mills and Mike Kelly, Director of Sports Development were on hand to conduct an information seminar on the recommended steps to follow in securing golf scholarships in Canada and the United States. This is a process that individuals need to be aware of and understand at least 2 years prior to their graduation from high school.
What became evident from the start of the seminar was the emphasis that colleges and universities place on the importance of both a good academic and golf record in securing a golf scholarship.
Mr. Kelly was able to give seminar participants his first-hand experience on the scholarship process. Among the topics he covered were: academic requirements; the costs of going to schools in the US; how to decide on the right school (program and coach); marketing yourself (how to tell the coaches about you and your accomplishments); playing ability (how good do you have to be?); the recruiting process (NCAA criteria; the use of a recruiter versus you pursuing the process on your own); the use of the internet in the process and the importance of a concise golf resume.
Judging by the number of questions asked and the interest shown by all involved, it’s safe to say that the scholarship seminar was an unqualified success.
Mr. Mills also announced a qualifying tournament in the Ottawa region for the 2012 Ontario Summer Games. The Canadian will host the qualifier for junior golfers who are Ontario residents and members of the GAO on June 6. Mr. Mills explained that OVGA Juniors could purchase a GAO Junior Affiliate Membership for $10. This membership would benefit junior golfers residing in Ontario opportunities to qualify for the 2012 Ontario Summer Games, to participate in Ontario Junior Tournaments and to be selected to 2012-2013 Under 19 – Under 17 Team Ontario annual high performance programs. GAO Junior Affiliate Members are also eligible for inclusion in the GAO Order of Merit rankings and also eligible for GAO Scholarships to support post-secondary education as well as having access to GAO Sport Development clinics and seminars.
Information on programs offered by the Golf Association can be found on their website at www.gao.ca.
– Reporting by Joe McLean