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First Tee academy now open

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Mike Gildea
Special to the Beacon
The new $1.5 million Carolina Life Skills and Leadership Academy is open for business and teens are invited to sign up.
On the 28-acre campus of The First Tee of Brunswick County, just outside Shallotte, the 9,000 square-foot academy will be host to a series of four-day and four-night summer academies in character education through The First Tee’s life skills and core values curriculum.
In addition, the academies will focus on leadership development and teach healthy habits for life developed by LPGA Hall of Famer Annika Sorenstam.
The new facility has dormitory rooms, a kitchen, a dining area and recreational space. Ten to 12 counselors and coaches will staff each academy.
One hundred participant opportunities are being offered June 16-21 and June 23-28 for Brunswick County youth ages 14-17. Proficiency in golf is not required. All participants receive full tuition scholarships but must provide their own transportation to and from the academy at the beginning and end of each week. Each week begins with participant arrivals on Sunday afternoon and ends after the graduation dinner on Thursday evening.
During the week students will learn how to live The First Tee’s Nine Core Values. Leadership concepts and STAR—Stop, Think, Anticipate, Respond—will also be taught. Participants will develop a community service project as their takeaway from the academy.
Among the motivational speakers are retired Army Lt. Generals Marvin Covault and Joseph Kinzer; Judge Ola Lewis; Sheriff John Ingram; Rebecca Albin and E.B. Bartlett, executive directors of the Brunswick and Cape Fear First Tee chapters; and Terry Mauney, a former PGA professional golfer.
Through the academy experience, participating youngsters will be better equipped to succeed in school and life while being prepared to be the good citizens and societal leaders of the future.
To register, go to www.thefirstteebrunswickcounty.org and scroll to Carolina Life Skills and Leadership Academy. Look under Our Schedule and click on registration. The weeks reserved for Brunswick County youth are June 16-21 and June 23-28. For more information, call Mauney at (910) 754-5288.