Making Science Fun – Chevron STEM ZONE

Gone are the days where learning about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) was limited to worksheets textbooks, and vinegar/baking soda volcanoes.

Enter Chevron STEM ZONE – where learning is disguised by hands-on activities and engaging students through their natural curiosity.

“The amazing thing about STEM is that it is at work all around us,” said Steve Green, vice president of Policy, Government and Public Affairs for Chevron, “including in the sports you watch and play.”

In 2012 Chevron partnered with the United States Golf Association (USGA) to bring STEM to life for the next generation of golfers. Through their multimedia exhibit – known as the STEM ZONE – Chevron demonstrates the science of golf at numerous tournaments throughout the country each year.

“Our goal is to make STEM fun,” Green reported. “The kids that come through are learning all sorts of technical and scientific information, but they don’t always realize that – because to them, it’s just fun.”

This week, Chevron STEM ZONE can be found next to the 18th hole of Pebble Beach Golf Links for The Nature Valley First Tee Open.  Hundreds of Northern California youth will explore the STEM side of golf. Participants investigate air pressure, range of motion, biofeedback, momentum, agronomy, aerodynamics and thermal imaging  - all with direct ties to the game of golf.

Walking through the STEM ZONE, participants are encouraged to touch, question, press, push and even launch things. Hands of participants shoot up in the air when asked to volunteer or answer questions – even from kids that may not be eager to participate in school. The overall goal is to make STEM approachable.

“We believe STEM education is a national imperative – it is vital to innovation and our country’s overall economic strength and competitiveness,” Green said. “Our efforts to support STEM education aims to arm students with the critical skills they need to succeed in their future careers—whether at Chevron or in other industries.”

Chevron has supported numerous Youth on Course scholarships for individuals entering STEM fields of study. In 2014, Youth on Course had 16 such scholarship recipients. By providing access to fun learning early on, Chevron hopes to inspire youth to explore careers in STEM.

“Despite the growing demand for technical jobs in the modern economy, science and math achievement scores in the U.S. are below those of other developed countries,” Green explained. “Investing in today’s youth will help our country build a highly skilled and technically proficient workforce that can compete for – and excel in – the careers that fuel innovation and help solve some of our biggest challenges.”

Youth on Course is proud to partner with Chevron and continue to expose youth to STEM education opportunities. Golf may seem like just another sport – but it can open up a whole host of learning opportunities.



Youth on Course distributes $150,000 to deserving high school graduates

The mission of Youth on Course is to provide youth with links to a better future – and on Wednesday, thirty-seven futures got a whole lot brighter.

Nearly 150 people gathered at Lake Merced Golf Club for the inaugural Youth on Course Scholarship Luncheon, where 37 high school seniors formally received Youth on Course scholarships. Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom was in attendance to congratulate recipients. Awards totaled $150,000 given in recognition for students’ outstanding community stewardship, academics and personal achievements.

Each YOC scholarship recipient was handed an official certificate from Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom

Each student received at least $4,000 towards college education.

But that wasn’t all.

Thanks to generous donations from First Republic Bank and Sony, each recipient went home with a brand new Sony Xperia tablet to help them on their way.

Each award recipient was selected out of a pool of more than 400. The candidates had to submit extensive applications, letters of recommendation and demonstrate academic excellence. 50 Finalists were interviewed before the final selection of 37 scholars.

Of the 37 awardees, 20 will be the first in their family to attend college. 19 have connections to the golf industry, and the average GPA for the award winners was 3.91. In total the group had more than 4,000 hours of community service in high school.

This scholarship luncheon was the first of it’s kind for Youth on Course, but will continue as an annual event.

Charlotte Woo pictured with Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom

Newsom addressed the crowd stating the importance of finding a passion and learning lessons from failure, reminding them of the old adage, ‘Success is often defined as the ability to move from failure to failure with enthusiasm.’

“Life is not about being something, it’s about doing something,” Newsom said.

Joining Newsom on the stage was 2010 Youth on Course scholarship recipient, Veronica Zavala, who will graduate this month from Santa Clara University as a first generation college graduate and is currently working for Google. 2014 scholar Kelsey Wong also spoke, thanking donors and describing her journey towards higher education.

“Receiving this Youth of Course scholarship, it feels like people are holding my hands,” Wong said. “Thanks for that hand. Thank you for letting me take the first step toward pursuing my higher education.”

Introducing, the Youth on Course Class of 2014:

  • Alberto Alvarado of Santa Rosa will attend UC Santa Barbara to study Economics (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Annika Anderson of Sacramento will attend UC Berkeley to study Molecular Biology (Linda Y. Rindt)
  • Elizabeth Azevedo of Merced will attend University of Michigan to study Communications (Thompson Family Scholar)
  • Kelsey Belli of Vacaville will attend Chico State (Honors Program) to study Foreign Linguistics (Thawley Family)
  • Angela Brown of Oakland will attend American University in Washington DC to study International Studies (George Miller)
  • Sammy Carey of Clovis will attend UC Davis (Honors Program) to study Political Science (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Zaria Clemmons of San Francisco will attend Agnes Scott College in Georgia to study Communications (Amelia Thornton)
  • Zenay Clemmons of San Francisco will attend Agnes Scott College in Georgia to study Business and International Studies (Dr. Bettye Saxon)
  • Noe Garza of Selma will attend Fresno Pacific University to study Biology (Tom Carter)
  • Stephanie Giori of Arcata will attend UC Davis to study Genetics (Linda Y. Rindt)
  • Eulalia Gutierrez Garcia of Hollister will attend Cal Poly to study Business (Chevron)
  • Craig Kampen of Visalia will attend UC Davis to study Medical Engineering (Cheryl & Dan Hansford)
  • Vanessa Li of San Francisco will attend UC Berkeley to study Public Health (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Eric Medina of Fort Bragg will attend UC Santa Cruz to study Political Science (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Jacqueline Medina of Salinas will attend Fresno State to study Agricultural Business (Paul Porter Memorial)
  • Emanuel Nunez of Gustine will attend UC Merced to study Biology (Chevron)
  • Kishan Patel of Santa Cruz will attend UC Davis to study Biology (Chevron)
  • Paulina Prasad of Sonoma will attend Boston University to study International Relations (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Max Reichart of Forest Hill will attend Cal Poly to study Communications/Journalism (Mike Cinelli)
  • Dreama Rhodes of Merced will attend UCLA to study Mathematics (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Palmer Runberg of Willits will attend UC Santa Barbara to study Film (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Lilavaline (Tina) Saensombath of Fresno will attend Fresno State to study Biology (Chevron)
  • Christopher Seruge of San Francisco will attend UC Santa Cruz to study Computer Science and Robotics (Linda Y. Rindt)
  • Anthony Speer of Merced will attend Fresno Pacific to study Pre-Physical Therapy (Chevron)
  • Zhicong (Brian) Wang of San Francisco will attend UC Berkeley (Linda Y. Rindt)
  • Samuel Waterstone of San Anselmo will attend UC Santa Barbara (Stephanie & David Baker)
  • Jantel Wells of Sacramento will attend UC Merced to study Applied Mathematics (Nancy & Bill Hammonds)
  • Frances Wilson of Hanford will attend Fresno State to study Criminology (Anne Kezirian)
  • Kelsey Wong of Fremont will attend UC Berkeley to study Political Science (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Charlotte Woo of San Francisco will attend New York University to study Computer Science (Chevron)
  • Theresa Woods of Sonora will attend San Diego State to study Biomedical Engineering (Mark Cooley)
  • Desirae Woodson of Yuba City will attend Chico State to study Liberal Studies (Paul & Diane Morton)
  • Xiaofan Wu of San Francisco will attend Wellesley College in Massachusetts to study Political Science (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Min Ying Yang of Oakland  will attend UC Berkeley to study Applied Mathematics (Stacey Baba)
  • Jasmine Yiggins of Clearlake will attend California State University East Bay to study Nursing (Bill Hauck Memorial)
  • Michael Yussuf-Mounthault of Oakland will attend UC Santa Cruz to study Legal Studies (Lisa & Douglas Goldman Fund)
  • Xiao Yan (Kelly) Zhao of Tai Shan, China will attend UC Berkeley to study Linguistics and Education (Jaunich Family)


Morning Drive: Youth on Course

Youth on Course recently received high praises from Golf Channel’s Matt Ginella on The Morning Drive.

Check out the clip here:

Corey Pavin Southern California Invitational

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Youth on Course was strongly represented at the inaugural Corey Pavin Southern California Invitational.

Presented by SCPGA Junior Tour, the Corey Pavin Southern California Invitational took place Jan. 25-26, 2014 at Maderas Golf Club in Poway, Calif.  The 54-hole event featured 90 exclusive junior players from around the world competing for the title. 60 boys and 30 girls participated in the event that ran simultaneously with the Farmers Insurance Open held at Torrey Pines. The juniors were able to attend the Farmers Insurance Open as part of the Southern California Invitational.

Of those competing, six current and former Youth on Course members were present. Seb Crampton of Pacific Grove (YOC Monterey eClubhouse member) took home the title at the event after carding 3-under-par 213 in the three day event. Crampton narrowly beat former YOC member, Cameron Champ of Sacramento. Crampton and Champ were tied at 142 heading into the final round. 1-under-par 71 in the final round was enough for Crampton to take home the trophy – but only by one stroke. Champ finished tied for second with 2-under-par 214.

YOC member Blake Abercrombie of Rocklin finished tied for 45th place. Amay Poria of Morgan Hill finished tied for 51st place, and David Laskin of Elk Grove finished 59th.

In the Girls Division, Emily Laskin of Elk Grove represented YOC finishing in 20th place.

Congratulations to all YOC members that participated in the Corey Pavin Southern California Invitational!

January Member of the Month

2014 is here and Youth on Course has some exciting resolutions for the new year.

With over 9,000 members annually, Youth on Course is consistently represented by talented, smart and interesting individuals throughout Northern California. This year, one of our goals is to recognize our outstanding members. Beginning with Zachery Pollo.


Pollo continues to excel on the golf course. He recently won the Little Linkers for his age category.

Pollo is a 4th grade honor roll student with a perfect attendance record. The Rocklin, Calif., native started swinging golf clubs at the driving range at the age of four. By age seven, Pollo was playing full rounds. Now nine, Pollo has continued to excel and consistently shoots in the low 80s. In his first tournament, one that included three rounds of  9 holes, Pollo dominated his age category and won by eight strokes. Pollo was also the champion of the Little Linker event for his age category. His favorite course is Haggin Oaks in Sacramento where he recently shot 7-over-par 79 from the Tan tees.


Pollo, pictured center, won the Eppie's Kids duathlon for his age category for the third year in a row.

Off of the golf course, Pollo lives an extremely active lifestyle. In his spare time, the nine year old enjoys hiking, biking, snowshoeing and running. This last summer, Pollo won the Eppie’s Kids duathlon –  a running/biking event – for the third time in a row, and he hopes to be a professional cyclist someday – if becoming a professional golfer doesn’t work out, that is.

Lofty goals are nothing new for Pollo.


Zachery Pollo pictured with his parents during one of their numerous mountain hikes.

At the mere age of six, he climbed White Mountain -a 14 mile hike with an elevation above 14,000 feet. At the age of seven, Pollo took to Mt.Whitney, the highest summit in the contiguous United States, for a 22-mile hike.  Pollo has also climbed Mt. Elbert in Leadville, Colo., the second highest mountain in the lower 48 states.  Most recently, Pollo conquered Mt. Langley in August, marking his fourth climb with an elevation over 14,000 feet. Pollo and his father have hiked or snowshoed to over 75 mountain peaks across eight states.

Youth on Course salutes Zachery Pollo for all his hard work on and off the golf course. Pollo exemplifies what it means to be a member of Youth on Course as he continues to excel academically, set and achieve goals, thrive in healthy lifestyle activities and stand out on the golf course. Congratulations Zachery on becoming our very first Youth on Course Member of the month.


Know a Youth on Course member that deserves to be recognized? Let us know about him or her by contacting Lindsey Novitzke by email – and by filling out our Member of the Month submission form by clicking this link.



Safe House of Lake County Golf Tournament, Dinner, and Fundraiser

John Scott Senz had a wonderful opportunity to represent the Northern California Golf Association’s (NCGA) Foundation Youth on Course (YOC) at the Safe House of Lake County ( Golf Tournament, Dinner, and Fundraiser.
The event was held on Saturday, August 17, 2013 at the Hidden Valley Golf Course in Middletown up in the Clear Lake area of Northern California. John Scott played in a scramble foursome with his mother, Marta, his father, Doug, and longtime family friend, Greg McCartney.
John Scott sank three birdie putts, the last one a dramatic 15 footer on the 18th hole to allow the foursome to finish at even par for the day.

John Scott is a member of the First Tee of the Tri-Valley and a YOC member, but his Saturday golf experience paled in comparison to a life experience that he received.

The mission of Safe House of Lake County is to try to help some of the hundreds of homeless teens in Lake County. Their August, 2013 update reported that they had completed their fiscal year and that it had been a very successful year for all concerned. They were able to feed, house and provide emotional support to ten different teenagers. I would agree that they were very successful based on an encounter that John Scott had.

John Scott talked to and then accepted this letter (below) from Laura Onate Davis, one of the residents of Safe House and a recipient of the Youth on Course LeVine Family Scholarship:


Dear Youth on Course member,
Thank you so much for coming to this fundraiser event. As you might already know, this particular event is for the Safe House in which I have lived for a year. This house has given me the quiet and peaceful environment that I needed to flourish academically and in life.
Laura Onate Davis

Laura overcame a troubled home life with help and guidance from the Safe House to become the valedictorian of her graduating class at Lower Lake High School. She will be attending UC Davis in September as pre-med student. She received enough money from the Youth on Course scholarship and several others to carry her through all four years of college.

Laura’s story transcends golf and goes right to heart of what is right with good people doing the right thing. I feel fortunate that my son and the rest of the golfers at the event were able to briefly share in her success and the success of Safe House.

Hundred Hole Hike

In August 2011, I came across an article a friend posted that featured Jim Colton, a golfer who walked 155 holes to raise over $110,000 for Ballyneal caddie, Ben Cox, who was paralyzed in a terrible ski accident. I was deeply moved and inspired by Jim’s actions, and felt eager to find out how I could be involved. Fast forward two years, this single act of kindness has launched into a nationwide event called the Hundred Hole Hike (HHH), an event raising over $400,000 for dozens of valuable charitable causes. I am thrilled to announce that this June, the HHH will be coming to the Bay Area!

On June 24, two of my closest golf buddies and I will be walking 100-plus holes at one of the best tracks around in Ballyneal Golf Club. Some of you may be asking, “What would possess someone to walk 100-plus holes in a single day (approximately equivalent to 6 rounds of golf or 45 miles)?” Simply put, I can’t think of a better way to take my passion for golf to raise awareness and money for organizations that make the local Bay Area community a better place for underserved youth, and to grow the game of golf. My goal is to raise a total of $10,000 for two incredible organizations:

- NCGA Foundation: Youth on Course

I started playing golf when I was 11 years old. My parents were refugees from Vietnam and working class people. There wasn’t a single golfer in my family, so no one could have predicted how big an impact golf would have on my life. Youth on Course is a program of the Northern California Golf Association Foundation that reaches out to diverse communities to ensure that all deserving youth receive the opportunity to enjoy this great game. The program ingrains core values including responsibility, honesty, perseverance and sportsmanship and gives access to low-income Bay Area youth to play dozens of golf courses for $5.

- East Bay Asian Youth Center (EBAYC)

As a graduate student studying healthcare policy at the UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy, I’ve become increasingly concerned with the growing rates of obesity amongst our youth. The East Bay Asian Youth Center (EBAYC) serves all demographics of Oakland youth and strives to create a culture of wellness in Oakland schools by developing programs that bring healthier foods into local schools and encouraging kids to become more active. They are making an impact in Oakland neighborhoods and I’m proud to support them.

How can you get involved?

1) Pledge a donation on the HHH website. Click on my “pledge now” tab and donate to these worthy causes. Any amount, large or small, will make a huge difference! No donation is too small.
2) Follow me (@vansnguyen) and the Hundred Hole Hike (@100holehike) on Twitter and Facebook for updates on the event.
3) Tell your friends! Please share my link with your friends and through social media.

Thank you for all your support! Your encouragement and well wishes are greatly appreciated. I am looking forward to the challenge!


–Vans Nguyen


Bay Area Pinseekers Golf Club Supports Youth on Course

The Bay Area Pinseekers GC held a silent auction during their recent Annual Meeting and wanted to give something back to the sport and kids who are trying to get into it. Through the generosity of some local courses and their members, they were able to raise $1,045 for Youth on Course. Courses that contributed included Poppy Ridge, Wente, Callippe Preserve, Metropolitan, Diablo Creek, Roddy Ranch, and Hiddenbrooke.

Bay Area Pinseekers Golf Club

Pictured from left to right:

Don Carlson – Publicity
Steve Newton – Webmaster
Bob Harley – Past President
Bob Butler – Handicap and Membership
Dean McCurry – Tournament Director
Steve Shaw – Secretary/Treasurer
Bob Jardin – President

Monterey Pines Golf Association

Thanks to Monterey Pines Golf Association’s Club President Charles Johnson for visiting Poppy Hills GC today to present club champion and NCGA Assistant Director of Course Rating, Otis Goodwin,  his trophy. Monterey Pines Golf Association recently selected Youth on Course as its charity partner. We appreciate the support of all of their members.

NCGA Foundation Pro-Am Presented By Club Car, Aug. 17 At Spyglass Hill

The NCGA Foundation held its 10th annual Pro-Am on Friday, August 17 at Spyglass Hill in Pebble Beach. Proceeds from the Club Car-sponsored event will help youth in Northern California develop life skills and values though the Foundation’s Youth on Course program.

Four-man teams were paired with a local professional in a modified shamble format in which each team selected the best drive of all five members. Each individual then played his or her own ball from there through the completion of the hole.

The InterWest Insurance Services team won the Pro-Am gross title with a 61. Team members included Pat Hoffman, Shawn Blofsky, Tony Pozas, Eric Blofsky, and professional Mick Soli. Club Car finished second, one stroke back. Dave Nelson, Kevin Rosa, Eric Andrews, Scott Hoyt and professional Ashley Marsay made up the team.

The Monument Administrators team captured the net title, posting a 52 with the aid of professional Jason Owen. Team members were Dave Bramwell, Jim Smallwood, LJ Bettalagies, and Mike Der Manouel. The Viking Steel team, which included Dan Hansford, Bob Nebozuk, Jay Clifton, Brian Morse and professional Todd Fischer, took second after carding a 53.

Jason Schumhl fired a 69 to win the professional division. Todd Fischer netted second place with a 70.



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Federal Tax ID Number: 94-3108575
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