It’s Thursday afternoon. Most high school students are heading home
to play XBOX, or going to the park with friends, but on this day...
Nine student-athletes board a Church Hill Academy bus to the Crossings Golf Course in Ashland. As they step off of the bus each student is wearing his or her golf shoes.
We walk towards the putting green where their 2016 Black Callaway golf bags and clubs are lined up. (Thank you Callaway Golf and Marc Desisto, Crossings Golf Course Club Pro for sponsoring our youth.)
Students grab their bags and move towards the driving range to hit a few buckets of balls to warm up. And now the unthinkable happens!
They gather in groups of three, tee off and begin to play a round of golf. We play about three holes because our practice time is from 3:30pm – 5:00pm.
WE HAVE A GOLF TEAM! They are learning how to figure out distance, what club to use for certain shots, and how to read the slope of a green when they are preparing to putt. They are learning how to hit a ball below their feet or on a tee.
How will they deal with the frustration of a bad shot? How will they not let it affect their next one? Most importantly, they practice integrity, giving themselves one-stroke penalties, even when no one else saw them make a mistake.
I had a dream that young black boys and girls could have a chance to play this game my dad taught me.
Many people laughed at me when I said I wanted to start a golf team in the inner city of Richmond. But now look!
And the dream continues…
Just within the past two weeks we launched the Church Hill Academy Culinary School. With the support of Councilwoman Cynthia Newbill and her Healthy U Initiative, our students have learned why our community is a food desert and the effects of youth diabetes.
Inspired by these classes I asked Chef Maxwell, MBA, CEC, CCE, AAC, Culinary Educator to help our students not only gain this head knowledge but also learn to prepare healthy meals.
As part of our MLK Day Celebration, sixteen Academy students, (referred to as Jr. Chefs) prepared a three-course meal from scratch for our student body, faculty, parents and friends.
There were more than 80 people in attendance. The meal was awesome!
A legitimate high school Golf Team… a Culinary School! The only thing left for us to do is create a recognizable inner city SWIM TEAM.
Be on the lookout for my next blog post to see what Tim Joyce, CEO of the Richmond YMCA and I work out.