USGA, PGA Of America Form Junior Partnership With Pilot Program Spanning Seven States

Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. (April 17) - The United States Golf Association and The PGA of America announced a partnership for a Junior Golf Program in 2009 that focuses on expanding the number of junior golfers while fostering life-long participation in the game.

The pilot program will involve PGA Professionals in seven PGA Sections across the country that have demonstrated strong junior golf infrastructures - Indiana, Illinois, New Jersey, Northern Texas, South Florida, Southern California and Wisconsin.

The USGA/PGA Junior Golf Program will comprise three initiatives; an After School program, a Trio Mentoring program, and a Course Access program.

  • The After School program is a four-to six-week activity conducted at 75 sites for one hour immediately after school. All sessions are conducted outdoors in an open space using traditional golf equipment. PGA Professionals will utilize the PGA First Swing and PGA Medalist curriculum to instruct youth on core golf skills - etiquette, rules and fundamentals - which will enable instructors to certify that participants are prepared for the next step of playing golf. A student-teacher ratio of 10 to 1 will be maintained, with all participants gathering for a final session at a golf facility.
  • The Trio Mentoring program is intended to provide junior golfers the opportunity to be encouraged, mentored and supported in order to achieve their full potential. Youngsters will be identified by the following: PGA Professionals, USGA volunteers, facilities, PGA Sections and State and Regional Golf Associations. The mentoring program will be conducted during the summer season and include a minimum commitment of six pro-am-kid playing and teaching opportunities.
  • The Course Access program will utilize USGA and PGA digital media assets such as PlayGolfAmerica.com as well as JuniorLinks.com, to present discounted course access opportunities to help developing players find the right golf course for their location, budget, and skill level.

"Building the next generation of golfers is one of the hallmarks of our mission as PGA Professionals and one that is shared by our partner, the United States Golf Association," said PGA of America President Jim Remy. "Our partnership with the USGA in this program represents the next step to extending those building blocks for our country's future golfers. We are excited about the curriculum that will be used to reach youngsters and the enthusiasm that our member professionals bring to the lesson tee each day. It is their body of work which makes the game of golf enjoyable for everyone."

USGA-PGA Junior Golf Program

The After School Program will be promoted by the schools through PGA Sections during The First Tee National Schools Program or physical education class as an elective next step to learning to play golf. The USGA and PGA of America will co-brand the junior golf programs and divide responsibilities, with each contributing grants.

"The USGA is excited to partner with The PGA of America and its 28,000 members in expanding opportunities for young people to learn the game of golf," said USGA President Jim Vernon. "Providing more quality instruction and increasing opportunities to get kids on the golf course will help assure golf's future by helping today's junior golfers become lifelong players."

In addition to the After School Program, recruitment of junior golfers will continue through mentoring programs, PGA and LPGA professionals, partner programs with The First Tee, and other junior golf programs and associations that have been utilized in the seven pilot PGA Sections.

Partner Links
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Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.

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Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



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IBM
   

IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

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Lexus
   

Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

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American Express
   

Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


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