SEPTEMBER 4, 2019
RICHMOND, BC (PGA of British Columbia) -- With the application deadline approaching for the PGA of BC Community Leadership Bursary and the Jim Gibson Scholarship, the 2018 recipients of both awards are encouraging their fellow Golf Professionals to consider making a submission after seeing their funding make a difference.
The two annual awards, valued at $1,000 each, allow the Association to acknowledge those who are giving back within their communities and working to further their professional development.
The PGA of BC Community Leadership Bursary is handed out each year to an individual member or member facility demonstrating a desire and passion to make a difference in the lives around them. Last year’s bursary was awarded to Revelstoke Golf Club in support of the facility’s Community Junior Program. Under that initiative, the club extends free memberships to junior-aged Revelstoke residents, in addition to hosting multiple, complimentary junior clinics during the season. Thanks to the program, junior participation in Revelstoke has skyrocketed since its 2017 launch.
Head Professional Dean Jackson said the PGA of Community Leadership Bursary has had a major impact on the program to the benefit of youth golfers.
“It definitely helped us go out and buy some proper equipment for all age ranges,” said Jackson. “Along with the free, community program, we’re able to basically equip the kids who didn’t have clubs. We now have clubs at the facility for everyone to use, basically.”
And those clubs are most certainly being put to good use.
“It’s incredible how busy we are,” said Jackson. “Every day in the summer the kids clubs have gone out.”
Jackson suggested his colleagues to look at their own club’s operations and programming to see how the Community Leadership Bursary could be utilized and consider putting in an application.
“I think anything your club does that’s above and beyond, anything that supports your community or community initiatives is worth applying (to support with) the bursary,” said Jackson. “We’re a small, not-for-profit golf club, so any kind of funding that we receive is a huge, huge help. Any donations, grants or bursaries that we can apply for only help the success of our programs.”
The Jim Gibson Scholarship is awarded each year to an individual within the PGA of BC community that best exemplifies volunteerism, while also being dedicated to furthering their education and professional development to the benefit of others.
Capliano Golf & Country Club Professional David Stashuk was the scholarship’s recipient in 2018, his second year of PGA of BC membership. Running Capilano’s junior program with an emphasis upon on-course experiences for the club’s youth members, Stashuk also made a commitment to furthering his education on multiple fronts. He’s currently enrolled in a three-year, business-management program through Athabasca University, which he feels will be an asset for him as he continues to build a career in the golf industry.
“The program has quite a few courses on how to communicate with people, and reading certain situations and responding to them correctly. I’ve already used quite a bit of what I’ve learned,” said the 29-year-old. “If I decide to pursue a Head Professional or GM job, (my studies) will definitely help me understand a bit more about accounting and how the back-end operations of a business work.”
Stashuk also used part of the scholarship funding to expand his knowledge on golf instruction, attending the highly regarded Coach Camp run by acclaimed instructor Andrew Rice in Savannah, Ga., last December. Sean Foley, Sasho MacKenzie and Grant Waite were among other top-level instructors who Stashuk was able to glean information from at the three-day gathering.
“My biggest takeaway was that we’ve really only started to understand the golf swing in the last 10 years with all the technology that’s come out,” said Stashuk. “It was pretty interesting to hear some of the best teachers in the world say: ‘We still have a very narrow idea of what’s in the golf swing.’”
Applications for both the PGA of BC Community Leadership Bursary and Jim Gibson Scholarship will be accepted until Sept. 13. Please visit the PGA of BC Scholarship Program page to access application forms and learn more about each honour.