International Junior Sports & Education Advisors (IJSA) and Global Junior Golf (GJG) are happy to announce an expansion of the current partnership. After Bishops Gate Golf Academy (BGGA) has joined as a GJG Performance Center in 2016, it is an absolute honor that International Junior Golf Academy (IJGA) will be listed from 2018 onwards as a GJG Performance Center. Global Junior Golf is seeking and accepting only premium academies from around the world as GJG Performance Centers, which deliver top professional training facilities and family atmosphere for juniors, so juniors can ultimately chase their golf and collegiate dreams. IJGA has a long history of building top juniors and have helped players from around the world to achieve successful college careers. It is a great honor that two of top junior golf academies in the world are now connected and will be able to share their resources and expertise to all GJG members around the world!
Furthermore, IJGA and BGGA will host two prestigious Global Junior Golf events in December 2018 which opens the gates for international players to experience WAGR ranked tournaments in the U.S. The American Global Junior Golf ‘tournament swing’ will give juniors more possibilities to play on the home soil of college coaches, which ultimately helps in any college recruiting process. IJGA and BGGA will showcase both events not far away from the academy facilities. GJG members will have the chance to visit and explore each facility, where many national teams call home during winter training. Additionally, special packages will be available for GJG members to train at the academies and will have a chance to get introduced to the full expertise of the academy staff members. Global Junior Golf is very proud to offer their members extra value over the off season with future premier junior tournaments. A big thank you to Mrs. Lee-Anne Misseldine, CEO of IJSA and her whole staff for promoting junior golf. GJG would like to take the opportunity and have a quick interview with Lee-Anne about the upcoming exciting endeavors:
GJG: Lee-Anne, once again a big thank you from the GJG family for promoting junior golf and for the exiting extended partnership. How do you feel about the new endeavors?
Lee-Anne: It has been a pleasure working with Global Junior Golf for the last couple of years. We have been so impressed by the passion and professionalism of the team and feel very aligned in our values and mission for growing junior golf. This new partnership, expanding into IJGA and bringing GJG events to the USA, was a natural progression for our already successful partnership and we are very excited for the new opportunities this will bring to our students and GJG members.
GJG: GJG members already had the chance to get to know one of your premium brands, Bishops Gate Golf Academy. Please introduce International Junior Golf Academy to the GJG family.
Lee-Anne: IJGA is a very well-established brand in junior golf, with a rich history over 20 years. At IJGA we believe in developing the whole person—the athlete, the student and the young adult. Emphasizing both intensive training and scholastic achievement through the nationally accredited Heritage Academy, IJGA has produced some of the best junior golfers playing within the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA). As a result, nearly all of our students receive college scholarships to the top collegiate golf programs in the United States. Highly sought after, the diverse student body represents 28 countries as athletes and scholars. The golf team is led by Jonathan Yarwood, a UK PGA Master Professional with over 20 year’s experience in developing some of the world’s best juniors. Set in the golf paradise of Hilton Head, IJGA is ideal for players wanting to accelerate their progress and develop their game.
GJG: The goal of the “American tournament Swing“ of Global Junior Golf is that juniors have a chance to meet each of your academies (BGGA & IJGA) and additionally play top international tournaments. Can you tell us something about the hosting golf courses and each of the tournaments?
Lee-Anne: We are so excited to be hosting two Global Junior Golf events in December of 2018, both which will be operated in partnership with the International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT). The first will be in Hilton Head, South Carolina, one of the most prestigious golf regions of the U.S., followed by an event in Central Florida, close to BGGA. At this time we are working to secure both courses, which will be highly ranked courses, providing excellent challenges and conditions. Both events will be powered by IJGA and BGGA respectively We expect to have course confirmations in early March and look forward to those exciting announcements.
GJG: Both venues are logistically easy to reach and have international airports. At BGGA you fly into Orlando, Florida and for IJGA you fly into Savannah, Georgia. Can you give some insight to which type of player would find a fit in either Academy?
Lee-Anne: Both IJGA and BGGA have unique differentiators, and I encourage all the Global Junior Golf members who plan on travelling to the U.S. in December to play both events and visit both academies. Preferences come down to location, coaching teams, school, if relevant, and other non-core offerings. As far as the core program which encompasses golf training, technology, mental and fitness training, facilities, college preparation and student life, both programs are excellent and offer a great experience to a junior or amateur player wanting to improve their game and compete in the U.S.
GJG: Can players expect that college coaches will attend the events?
Lee-Anne: IJGA and BGGA are premier junior programs, with a strong network of college coach relationships and connections. Coaches are always looking for good student-athletes for their programs and rely on our recommendations to make recruiting decisions. We will be inviting as many college coaches as possible to attend our events to give exposure to the players and showcases their abilities.
GJG: During each event, players and parents will have the chance to attend Lecturing nights about College Golf and Academy life. Can you give some advise on how players should prepare for these educational sessions? Do they need to bring any information with them? And do you have any advice on how to approach college coaches?
Lee-Anne: The college recruitment process is complex and potentially overwhelming. Some students are unable to approach a coach due to NCAA rules, which restrict communication with students under a certain grade. At each academy, we will be conducting in-depth educational sessions to outline the process and provide practical tools to help student and families create their college plan. It would be helpful to bring your golf resume updated with academic scores such as GPA, SAT and TOEFL scores.
GJG: BGGA and IJGA have produced some very successful alumni students. Who are some of your alumni, and from which part of the world do juniors attend your academies?
Lee-Anne: We have students and alumni from all over the world, who have been successful in their collegiate and professional golf careers, as well as many who went on to pursue their passion in a number of other areas. The purpose of BGGA and IJGA is to prepare our students not just for golf, but for life, and give them the tools to be their very best, not matter what their path.
IJGA alumni include Morgan Hoffmann, Shanshan Feng, Song-Hee Kim, Pablo Larrazabal, In-Kyung Kim, Stephanie Meadow to name a few. BGGA has a much shorter history, but is proud of the caliber of player at the academy, such as Julian Perico, a top ranked Peruvian player and Anna Chen, who has won 10 events across different tours.
GJG: Why have you chosen to host the“American tournament swing“ of Global Junior Golf?
Lee-Anne: GJG events are run to a very high standard and all carry WAGR rankings. The IJGT is very pleased to be in partnership with GJG to provide this same high standard of tournaments to IJGT members and academy students. These first two events are just a start and we hope to continue to grow GJG in the States.
GJG: 2018 promises to be a very exciting year. Players will able to start qualifying for the ”American Tournament swing” in Portugal and are also already able to send their application inquiries. How many spots will be max available at each tournament and what will be the qualification criteria
Lee-Anne: We anticipate a maximum of 100 players at each event. Tournament details will be released soon, providing full information on tournament events, housing options, golf course etc.
Lee-Anne, thank you for your time and we are already counting the days fort he “American tournament swing“ from Global Junior Golf, proudly powered by IJGA and BGGA. The season 2018 is on the move and players are looking forward to qualify.