In the world of golf, success often depends not only on one’s swing but also on life skills, discipline, and a commitment to giving back. Jay Briggs Jr., an alum of First Tee – Central Ohio, is a remarkable individual who embodies these values. Jay’s journey through the program has been nothing short of inspiring, taking him from a young golfer with a passion for the game to a future leader with a heart for giving back. Read Jay’s story for a closer look at his experiences in the program, his love for golf, and how First Tee has played a part in shaping him into the person he is today.
You can also support Jay in our upcoming Gamechangers Golf Marathon!
Getting Started with Golf
Jay’s journey with First Tee began at just five years old, after his father introduced him to the sport. As Jay’s interest and love for the game grew, golf quickly became an added source of bonding for him and his dad, and something Jay knew he wanted to stick with long-term.
Through his time with First Tee, Jay explains that he didn’t just develop his golf game, he learned that golf is a multifaceted sport that teaches a variety of life skills. “First Tee taught the same traits my parents had instilled in me such as perseverance, integrity, sportsmanship, and interpersonal skills,” said Jay. “Now that I’m older, I use those skills to interact with professionals, make valuable connections, and even conduct business meetings on the golf course.”
Another aspect that stands out to Jay from his years in First Tee was the diversity among participants. He recalls interacting with other kids from all types of backgrounds and turning some of those relationships into lasting friendships. “It was just a great mix that gave me my first taste of diversity in golf,” explained Jay.
After playing on his high school golf team, Jay went on to pursue golf at the college level at the University of Redlands in California. This transition required a different level of work ethic, and time management, which pushed Jay to utilize the discipline and commitment he learned in part through First Tee. But it also afforded him the opportunity to focus on his game and academics while further developing his leadership skills.
Committed to Giving Back
Today, Jay is a fresh college graduate and has his eye on doing great things. He plans on entering the corporate world and using his coaching and leadership skills to one day become a business executive, making positive organizational change and impact on communities.
Jay’s time with First Tee has not only shaped his golf skills but also played a part in his passion for giving back. He believes in the importance of discipline and the value of mentorship. He aspires to establish his own foundation to provide opportunities for young individuals, just as he received them from First Tee.
“It’s been cool to be in a position to give back to the organization. It’s a domino effect – if I’m able to be a leader for younger individuals, they’ll see me and say ‘Oh, I want to do that too’.” Jay said. “Being in a leadership position comes with a lot of value and responsibility that I take great pride in, because I want to have a positive impact on others.”
Looking to the Future
From a five-year-old golfer to a young professional with a heart for giving back, Jay’s journey exemplifies the transformative power of loving, supportive parents and the First Tee program. His experiences in the program have not only helped shape him into a skilled golfer but also into a future leader with a strong commitment to personal growth and community development. Jay’s story is a testament to First Tee’s mission of building game changers – setting kids and teens on a path towards success and giving back to society.
Jay sums it up best: “It’s deeper than just the game of golf – there’s a common reason why we’re all here. First Tee is developing relationships that go a lot deeper than just teaching golf but are helping kids become a better man or woman in the future. And that’s why they say ‘building game changers’ – not just game changers within golf, but within life.”
Help Us Build Game Changers Like Jay
This holiday season we’re teeing up the opportunity to make a lasting impact in the lives of local kids and teens. During our 12 Days of Giving you can join us in building game changers by supporting our character-building programming.
Your gift helps us impact kids and teens throughout Central Ohio.