Jeremy dreher has been golfing since sixth grade and started his sophomore year of high school at the Desert Forest Golf Club in Carefree.
“I have always had a passion for golf. My dad introduced me to second year caddy (after I got an) email from the Junior Golf Association of Arizona, asking players to start getting a Desert Forest (job),” Dreher said.
“He called me in the middle of the fourth hour, and I was like, ‘OK, honey, I’ll do this. And then I went up two weeks later, did the practice and it was history from there.
After much hard work, two years later, Dreher, a student at Moon Valley High School in Phoenix, became the second consecutive Desert Forest Golf Club recipient of the Chick Evans Scholarship, a full four-year college fee. education and housing. scholarship after a long application process.
“I got the scholarship on Christmas Eve. So you can probably say it was the best Christmas present ever.
“When we got the letter in the mail I was just ecstatic and called my parents, they were at work. But I was really excited and happy when we got the letter in the mail. opened it up and he said, “Congratulations, you got the scholarship,” it was one of those moments where you almost dropped on the floor. It was a pretty awesome experience.
The Evans Scholars Foundation is “seeking students who demonstrate academic strength, financial need, exceptional character and a strong caddy record” for the scholarship, according to the Western Golf Association, which supports the foundation. This year, approximately 300 students received the prestigious scholarship worth over $120,000 for four years.
Dreher has applied to Penn State University and the University of Colorado, and he will use the scholarship for his studies at one of the schools. He would rather attend Colorado and plans to major in accounting and finance.
The scholarship was always on Dreher’s mind once he heard about it from his caddy masters and was his “biggest motivator” to continue caddying. He added that he learned a lot from the former caddy he was entrusted to from Desert Forest.
“When I was in my training, former fellow Evan Johnson was one of my biggest inspirations because I saw he was applying for the fellowship and he was a go-getter. And so, it made me want to excel,” Dreher said.
“Since Evan was the first recipient in Arizona, it kind of gave me a window to think like, ‘hey, you know what, if he can do it, I can do it.'”
The Desert Forest Golf Club is a 45-minute drive from Dreher, but he was willing to make the trip every weekend because he loves to caddy. He said his father was his No. 1 supporter.
“He’s an independent business owner, so he doesn’t necessarily have a lot of time to hang out,” Dreher said.
“Yet he was still, he still had enough time to take me out every weekend who drove me around when I didn’t have a car.”
“I thank him so much for that because I know how long it takes to drive and how much of a burden it is for him because he’s an independent business owner. We try to play golf as much as we can, but it’s usually not that much, about once a month at most, but those are the times I’m going to save forever.
Dreher said he loved every “loop” because it educated him. A loop is when a caddy is assigned to a golfer and rides with them. Dreher said he looks forward to completing these curls whenever he is at work.
“I’ve always found valuable information in every group I go to,” Dreher said. “And it’s nice how each person is unique. So they have their own lives and experiences. Just hearing their stories around the world and where they’ve traveled is really fun and some of the stories and cool golf tournaments they had, it’s a really neat experience to meet every new person every time.
“Caddying put a new perspective not just on the course, but also off the course, like learning to converse with adults. I know it will help me tremendously when I’m in that job interview or something. And then with golf, it gave me a different perspective on how I should play the shot and how I could get the best result when I go play.
Dreher plans to continue playing golf through college and beyond and potentially caddy at a local golf club if he can. He hopes younger cadets will be inspired by his scholarship.
“It’s nice to know that I’m proof of a success story that could happen to literally anyone who caddies,” Dreher said.
“And so going to these trainings that I used to go to and meeting some of the new caddies and saying, ‘Hey, I can get the Evans scholarship, you can do it too,’ and they’re really excited on this subject .”
He said he wanted to thank the golf club for having him.
“What they’ve done for me is just amazing because all the members there, they just want the caddies to be successful,” Dreher said.
“They like kids caddies because they want to connect with them and shape our future. So seeing them smile when I tell them I got the scholarship makes me feel even better. And the work that they put behind, you know, helping me with the emails and stuff, it’s just awesome. So, I want to give a big thank you to the club and Brandon Rogers, the head pro, for believing in me all the time and in my parents too.