In the seventh installment of our Bison Summer Series, men's golf junior Ashton Radvansky shares how he's stayed involved in his sport by working as a caddie and giving back to The First Tee.
This summer, I have spent the majority of my time working in the golf industry. One week after I arrived back home, I began working as both a caddie and a forecaddie at River Oaks Country Club in Houston, Texas. My favorite parts of the job are having the opportunity to work outside every day at a beautiful golf course and meeting amazing people who share priceless advice with me out on the course.
Although I have been caddying full-time this summer, I just recently completed an academy hosted by The First Tee, where I was a chaperone for 23 participants from around the country. It was titled the College Golf Prep Academy and was held in West Palm Beach, Florida. The First Tee is an organization that teaches children life lessons through the game of golf, and it is something that is extremely important to me. I joined The First Tee when I was in first grade, and I was selected for numerous leadership academies and played in a PGA Tour Champions event at Pebble Beach. Now, I am an alumnus of the program, giving back to the next generation of golfers.
The First Tee’s teachings are based upon their Nine Core Values: honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment. These values were instilled in me as a young child; I was raised to live my life by them and to always think of others before thinking of myself. The nine core values taught me how to achieve my goals by planning my work and working my plan. In middle school, upon completion of The First Tee’s curriculum, I decided to give back to a program that has given so much to me and helped me become the man I am today.
Since then, I have been volunteering each summer, and during the school year when I am home at the local facilities in my area. I was extremely honored to have been selected as a chaperone for the College Golf Prep Academy because it gave me the opportunity to mentor high school kids and share my experiences with them.
The College Golf Prep Academy is designed for participants in The First Tee who are in high school and who are serious about playing collegiate golf. I actually attended the academy four years ago so it was an incredible experience to go back as a collegiate golfer. It is crazy to think that I was in their exact same shoes going into my junior year of high school. At that point in time, I had no idea where I wanted to attend college, and, believe it or not, I had not even heard of Bucknell yet!
The week I spent with The First Tee has been my favorite part of my summer so far because I was able to share my experiences with kids who are going through the same recruiting process that I went through. It is one of the most stressful times to go through in high school, and I was happy to be able to answer all of their questions regarding collegiate golf and balancing their lives as student-athletes.
I am only home in Texas for a few more weeks before I officially become an upperclassman at Bucknell. I am excited to get back up to school and jump right into the 2017-2018 golf season. I know that the Bison men’s golf team has big things coming our way this season!
An Accounting and Financial Management major, Radvansky played in eight events during the 2016-17 campaign, shooting a season-best even-par 70 in the second round of the Donald Ross Intercollegiate. He is also a two-time member of the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll.
Past Bison Summer Series Features: