The majority of students at Clyde C. Miller Career Academy had never watched a game of golf, let alone held a golf club. However, thanks to a new partnership with the Gateway PGA Foundation, students are learning to drive, putt, and chip, but more importantly, they are learning how to improve their bodies, both physically and mentally.
Known as PGA Reach, the initiative was developed by the PGA of America, the Gateway PGA Foundation, and the St. Louis golfing community, and looks to measurably improve and advance opportunities for St. Louis area youth by focusing on the areas of recreation, education, awareness, community and health. Successes of the initiative are measured through:
- Increasing classroom attendance
- Lowering the high school dropout rate
- Enabling healthier young men and women through education, activities, and recreational programs
- Improving the economic opportunities available
"We are very excited to be working with the St. Louis Public Schools and Clyde C Miller Career Academy as the pilot school for PGA Reach. Improving Lives Through Golf – it's what we believe and it's what we do," said Ali Wells, Foundation Operations Director, and Gateway PGA.
To achieve their goals, PGA REACH has partnered with the following organizations:
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri (BBBSEMO): by utilizing BBBSEMO’s ABCToday! early warning system, PGA REACH is able to collect, track and respond to individual student performance measured through attendance, behavior, and classroom success in reading and math.
- Urban K-Life (UKL): a Christian-based organization operating in the inner city of St. Louis, with a proven track record of working with the District to improve students’ academic performance and reducing the dropout rate.
- Boys and Girls Club of Greater St. Louis (BGCSTL): a long-established institution in the St. Louis region, with a proven track record of inspiring and enabling youth to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.
Clyde C. Miller Career Academy was selected to pilot the program for the St. Louis region. Students learned golfing fundamentals from Michael Brown, PGA golf professional, and a mentoring team from Urban K-Life.
For more information about PGA REACH, please visit the Gateway PGA’s website: http://gatewaypga.org.