The First Tee

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The First Tee, a youth development organization, impacts 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. Supported by golf's major organizations, including the LPGA, Masters Tournament, PGA of America, PGA TOUR and USGA, The First Tee has reached more than 9 million young people since its inception in 1997 and reaches youth on golf courses, in schools and at other youth serving locations.


The First Tee was established by the World Golf Foundation [1] in November 1997 as a not-for-profit organization 501(c)(3). The initial focus was on creating affordable access for those not previously exposed to the game of golf. It has since broadened its focus to that of a youth development organization that teaches life skills using golf as a platform.[2] Founding partners include the PGA TOUR,[3] LPGA, PGA of America, USGA and the Masters Tournament.[4] Former President George H.W. Bush served as honorary chairman from 1997-2010 at which he moved to an emeritus role. In 2011, his son and former President George W. Bush stepped into the role and became the honorary chairman.[5][6][7]

The First Tee has three primary channels of delivering its programming: a network of approximately 180 chapters; The First Tee National School Program [8][9][10] which introduces golf to elementary-age students through physical education classes; and an after school program delivered by trained leaders at other youth service locations like YMCA and Boys and Girls Clubs.

The First Tee Life Skills Experience[edit]

The First Tee curriculum focuses on teaching character education and its "Nine Core Values" (honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy, and judgment).[11][12] The First Tee chapters use a teaching curriculum developed by experts in the field of positive youth development [13][14] and delivered by coaches. Through this experience, participants learn to transfer the values of golf to everyday life.[15][16]

The Life Skills Experience includes six levels starting with Target, the introduction level which provides a fun and safe environment that creates curiosity about the game. This level is recommended for ages five and up. The program culminates with advanced level Ace, which focuses on personal planning for golf, career, volunteerism and education for ages 14 and up. The other levels include: PLAYer, Par, Birdie and Eagle.

Chapters and Locations[edit]

The First Tee has approximately 180 chapters across the U.S. and in four international locations (Vancouver, Ireland, Japan, and New Zealand).

Participant Opportunities[edit]

The First Tee has several events for participants in the program. The Life Skills and Leadership Academy and PLAYer Advanced Academy are week-long programs where juniors enhance their life skills, improve their golfing ability, and build leadership qualities. The Auntie Anne's Leaders and Entrepreneurs Forum held in Florida offers high school participants an opportunity to be immersed in the business world of golf. The three-day program takes juniors behind the scenes of Disney World and a PGA Tour event. The Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach is an official Champions Tour event in which 81 junior participants are paired with a Champions Tour Professional and two amateurs in a week long tournament at the world-renowned Pebble Beach Golf Links (see section of The First Tee Open at Pebble Beach). These opportunities The First Tee offers allows participants to put the life skills and core values learned through the program into action. The First Tee also offers scholarships that reward their youth participants based on participation, accomplishments, academics, and leadership skills. The Scholars Program recognizes outstanding high school seniors and provides a gateway for a successful future with higher education. Participants can also apply for the Coca-Cola America’s Future scholarship. Five semi-finalists are interviewed by Coca-Cola executives to select the scholarship recipient. A third program is the RBS Achievers of the Year. Ten participants are rewarded to help fund their education after high school. These recipients are awarded based on their amazing achievements while undergoing difficult circumstances in their lives.[17]

The PURE Insurance Championship, Impacting The First Tee[edit]

The PURE Insurance Championship, Impacting the First Tee is a unique event played annually in September at the iconic Pebble Beach Golf Links and Poppy Hills Golf Club. It is the only event of its kind that pairs juniors from The First Tee to play alongside amateurs and legends from the game of golf. This PGA TOUR Champions event is televised nationally on the Golf Channel.

PURE Insurance became the title sponsor of this incredible event in 2017. Prior to that Nature Valley served as title sponsor from 2011-2016; Home Care & Hospice in 2010, it went unsponsored in 2009; and Walmart served as title sponsor from 2004-2008. [18]


  1. ^ "The First Tee Overview - a World Golf Foundation Initiative". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  2. ^ Poe, Barry (2010-06-23). "First Tee: More than just a game". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  3. ^ "PGA TOUR Charities: The First Tee". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  4. ^ "2010 Masters Golf Tournament". 2009-06-01. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  5. ^ "Golf Week". Golf Week. Retrieved 2011-02-18.
  6. ^ "Florida Golf Central". Florida Golf Central. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  7. ^ "Equine Scholars Program: A Presidential Welcome". 2009-09-19. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  8. ^ "NY State Golf Association". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  9. ^ "National School Program touches 'em all - | News, sports, business, jobs". Minot Daily News. 2010-04-15. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  10. ^ "The Vermont Golf Association". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  11. ^ Jeremy Peters (2010-06-26). "Program teaches youth how to succeed on and off links: Golf". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  12. ^ "Westwood to participate in First Tee Junior Golf Program". Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Linda Petlichkoff, Ph.D. - Department of Kinesiology - Boise State University". 2009-08-07. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  15. ^
  16. ^ "First Tee program teaches young golfers about developing character". 2010-06-28. Retrieved 2010-09-13.
  17. ^ "The First Tee Program". The First Tee. Retrieved 2011-08-09.
  18. ^ "First Tee Open at Pebble Beach". The First Tee. Retrieved 2011-08-09.

External links[edit]