The First Tee Suffolk County Mission
To impact the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf
About the First Tee
The First Tee was created in 1997 to introduce young people of all backgrounds to the game of golf and the life lessons it teaches. It does this by combining life skills and golf skills with every lesson. Through the First Tee life skills experience, a curriculum for teaching character education through specific life skills, children and teenagers alike can discover how the skills essential to success on the golf course can help them flourish in life. These skills include self-management, interpersonal communication, goal-setting, mentoring, and effective conflict resolution. The life skills experience sets the First Tee apart from other junior golf programs and youth initiatives. It ultimately strives to instill in participants the First Tee nine core values: honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, courtesy, judgment, confidence, responsibility, and perseverance.
These lessons for life are taught through a variety of golf-related exercises designed with the primary goal of having fun. Participants learn about themselves and others through a range of experiences that enhance their golf fundamentals as well as their fundamental values for life. As their opportunities on the golf course expand, so do the opportunities for their futures.
All participants receive The First Tee Card so their progress can be monitored as they advance through The First Tee certification levels of Par, Birdie, Eagle and Ace. Each stage introduces young people to different aspects of golf and life skills.
Advancing from one level to the next is accomplished by demonstrating acquired life skills, learning the rules of golf, posting a required number of rounds on the golf course and having the recommendation of the instructor.
The lessons learned through the Life Skills Experience are lessons which will remain with young people well into their future.
- Improve the game’s accessibility, making golf more available to people of all social strata, particularly children.
- Provide every child, regardless of race and economic background, the opportunity to learn and play golf.
- Instill the game’s inherently positive values, such as honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, and self-discipline.