On Tuesday, August 30, 26 players will come together to compete in the 10th annual Simpson Cup, a match-play event that will pit 13 injured service members from the UK and USA in a Ryder Cup-style competition.
This year’s event is taking place at Baltusrol CC in New Jersey. There is no money to be won, just a pure love of the game and the country.
Shauna Snyder is one of only two women who have qualified to play, and last year she became the first woman to compete for Team USA when the 2021 Simpson Cup was played at the Creek Club on Long Island , NY Snyder suffers from complex shoulder, back and neck injuries, but she quickly downplays her conditions.
“I feel extremely lucky to be as healthy as I am,” Snyder said recently by phone. “I still have a few things to settle. But that’s nothing compared to what these guys gave.
Snyder joined the military in 1988 and spent more than 32 years on active duty before retiring in 2020 as a full colonel. His next mission: to serve as the head of military liaison and employment for the On Course Foundation.
The On Course Foundation, which was officially launched in 2010, aims to provide injured service members (serving and retired) with the opportunity to build their golf skills, compete on the course, and connect participants with career opportunities. employment in the golf industry.
Since the foundation’s inception, On Course has expanded to conduct programs in 15 markets across the country, which include introductory clinics, game development under the guidance of PGA professionals, and team building workshops. ‘industry.
And since 2012, there is also the annual Simpson Cup, in which members go through a qualifying tournament in order to participate.
As the former Chief of Staff of the Army’s Warrior Transition Command, Snyder’s civilian gig with the On Course Foundation was a perfect fit. While on active duty, Snyder managed all wounded, ill, and injured Army soldiers returning from deployments. Now she is able to combine her passion for giving back to the community of injured veterans with her expertise in human resources.
Snyder learned the game from his father and grandparents, but didn’t start playing seriously until he was an adult. A stint on duty in Georgia both solidified his interest in the game and lit a competitive fire. Snyder then competed for the Army, playing on the All-Army team from 2011 to 2018 and traveling to tournaments around the world. But she says the most rewarding part of her job now is being able to witness the healing effect golf has on her military colleagues.
“The game of golf just changed their lives,” she said. “Guys with PTSD, who were struggling. Fighting alcohol, fighting addiction, trying to quit painkillers, whatever. And there’s just a total refocus on the game of golf, and using golf as a method of rehabilitation and finding that passion and purpose in life.
“And that’s what’s exciting about the job side,” she continued. “Because they’re so excited they just want to perform and potentially get into the industry.”
Part of Snyder’s many responsibilities with On Course include building relationships with partners such as Callaway, Top Golf, Golf Pride, Troon, Marriott, Club Corp and others, which then opens the door to more job opportunities.
Thanks to Snyder’s support, an On Course member recently landed a job with Callaway as a security manager at a distribution center. Another came to work alongside Snyder at the foundation. Still others have found work at golf courses across the country.
According to Snyder, employment is only one aspect of On Course’s mission.
“Giving our wounded and injured service members a place in rehab is important,” she said. “But also, I think more importantly, the programs help them stay in touch with other veterans who understand their mindset and understand a lot of what they’ve been through.
“It’s just a comfortable level that you have with other veterans,” she continued. “When you walk through the door, you know the connections are pretty much instantaneous. It’s just a shared understanding of what we’ve all been through, what we’ve seen, you know, and the struggles. But using the golf to find that passion and that mental focus that you need to recover and just re-engage with life, I think that’s what’s so important.
On Tuesday, Team USA and Team UK (Great Britain) will face off in six four-ball matches, followed by 13 singles matches on Wednesday. You can find more information about the event here.
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