NORTON, Massachusetts – First Tee of Massachusetts participants Saidah DaSilva and Kyzar Joshi have been selected to attend the 2022 First Tee Leadership Summit in Montana in August. First Tee, a youth development organization that helps kids and teens build their strength of character through golf, is partnering with PGA TOUR Superstore to hold their second-annual Leadership Summit at PGA TOUR Superstore Chairman and First Tee Board Member Arthur M. Blank’s West Creek Ranch.
DaSilva (Dorchester, MA) and Joshi (Ashland, MA) are among 40 teens from PGA TOUR Superstore markets across the country who were selected out of more than 70 applicants for this experience. After completing a 5-week Leadership Series locally at the PGA TOUR Superstore in Natick, DaSilva and Joshi were nominated by the chapter and then selected by a national judging panel. First Tee – Massachusetts has now had at least one participant selected in each of the first two years of this leadership summit, as Boston’s Christopher Towle was chosen to attend in 2021.
“We are thrilled that both Saidah and Kyzar were selected for this amazing opportunity,” said First Tee – Massachusetts Director of Operations Kyle Harris. “They have both worked very hard and been outstanding representatives of our chapter for many years. We are very proud of what they have accomplished and can’t wait to see how this experience will continue to develop their leadership skills and their growth as people.”
DaSilva, 18, has been a part of First Tee Massachusetts at the Franklin Park location for five years, working her way to the Birdie level. A 2022 high school graduate, she will attend Providence College in the Fall and hopes to study Marketing. In addition to attending First Tee classes, DaSilva has represented the chapter in several other capacities, including giving a speech to the John D. Mineck Foundation at Boston Golf Club about the impact First Tee has had on her life.
Joshi, 17 has been involved in First Tee for more than 10 years. Currently working toward completing his ACE level certification, he will be entering his senior year of high school this Fall and has his eye on playing golf at the collegiate level. An accomplished junior player, Joshi recently qualified for this year’s Mass Golf Junior Amateur Powered by KOHR Golf.
“I am honored and excited to be selected for the leadership summit” said Joshi “It is an experience that I think I will greatly enjoy, and I look forward to learning all that I can throughout the week.”
The First Tee Leadership Summit is designed to strengthen leadership skills through dynamic outdoor and team-building activities with the intended purpose of personal growth, education and coming together to make a difference. The curriculum explores concepts such as positive risk-taking, relationship building and identifying character strengths.
“I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know both Kyzar and Saidah over the last year and I cannot think of a more deserving pair to earn this opportunity,” said Allyson Mollung, Program Manager for First Tee Massachusetts. “The connections they make, the things they learn and the overall experience they get is something they will take with them everywhere they go.”
Between participating in many tournaments of their own and volunteering at the 122nd U.S Open earlier in June, the two have had quite the summer. During the U.S. Open DaSilva walked as a standard bearer for not one, not two, but three previous U.S. Open winners (Bryson DeChambeau, Justin Rose and Gary Woodland), while Joshi found himself walking with the final group (Will Zalatoris and eventual winner Matt Fitzpatrick) during Sunday’s Championship round.
“I am extremely grateful to be able to attend the Summit and excited to travel to a new state. I am looking forward to meeting new people and gaining a better understanding on the game of golf” said DaSilva “I hope to gain a lot of experience and try new things.”
At the conclusion of the Summit, four students will be selected for the First Tee College Scholarship Program and will receive financial support as well as access to mentorship and professional development opportunities throughout their four-year collegiate experience.