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Eastern Florida Youth Golf Camp Celebrates Milestone Year

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June 22, 2017 - Eastern Florida State College wrapped up its 25th Annual P.J. Wilson and Henry Scott Youth Golf Camp today with special recognition for 10 young participants, including an award for one two-year EFSC scholarship recipient.

80 young golfers, family, friends and camp volunteers gathered on the Cocoa campus for the awards presentation.

Thomas Davidson receives scholarship from three camp volunteers
The 2017 Golf Camp scholarship recipient Thomas Davidson, III receives his honor from the camp's lead instructor Roosevelt Jackson as instructor Isaac Johnson looks on and EFSC golf coach Jamie Howell applauds the 10-year attendee's achievement.

The top honor, the two-year EFSC scholarship, went to rising high school senior Thomas Davidson, III who has attended the camp for 10 years.

"The lessons learned from golf are so diverse and can be applied to real life — time management, decision making, persistence, honesty and integrity," said Davidson, who also hopes to make the EFSC men's golf team. "The same way golf has ups and downs, so does life and it's about learning to balance the good and the bad."

Those life-lessons have always been a main focus of the two-week free camp, which was started in 1992 under the guidance of Wilson and Scott, two African American golf professionals in Brevard County.

Wilson passed away in 2000 and Scott in 2002.

For years the free camp was known as the Minority Golf Camp because of its efforts to reach out to minorities, but it's always been open to all young people.

"This program exposed you to a group of people dedicated to building character in young people," guest speaker Stockton Whitten told the crowd as he went through a list of core values common to golf and life.

Golfers with Roosevelt Jackson and Titan Mascot
Golf Camp instructor Roosevelt Jackson and EFSC's mascot with beginner group honorees.

"Core values serve as your compass; they're the controls that keep you out of trouble," said Whitten, EFSC's associate vice president for facilities and special projects. "Golf and life are similar because they both illustrate that decisions we make have consequences."

All 80 participants were honored with certificates and had their photo taken with the camp's lead instructor Roosevelt Jackson.

Special recognition also was given to campers in three groups: Jackson's for beginning golfers who have never played; instructor Isaac Johnson's intermediate golfers and EFSC Golf Coach Jamie Howell's group for experienced athletes.

Winners from Jackson’s group were: Most improved: Braylen Spencer; Sportsmanship: Matthew Jenkins; Best Attitude: Breezy Kovac.

Coach Jaime Howell presents plaque to Dr. Joe Lee SmithFrom Johnson’s group: Most improved: Cathryn Cooper; Sportsmanship: Tommy Ross; Best Attitude: Michael Rodriguez.

From Howell’s group: Most improved: Vachean Colclough; Sportsmanship: Isiah Bolton; Best Attitude: Nicholas Epler

Coach Howell also presented a special Outstanding Advocate Award plaque to Dr. Joe Lee Smith, who's been involved with the camp for all 25 years and who's retiring from EFSC at the end of June after 47 years with the college in roles that have included campus provost and advisor to the president.

"It's been a good ride," said Smith. " I've enjoyed every minute of coming to work and serving my community and working with the young people of this college and this community."