The road to success is rarely lonely. Mentors serve as a guiding force along the path to achieving goals and fulfilling dreams. Recently, SCGA Junior held a special Play Day, one that jumpstarted mentorships for years to come.

Held at TPC Valencia, this outing was specifically designed to serve as not only a round of golf on a top-level golf course, but also doubled as a career day for eight avid SCGA Junior participants.

Four groups of four (each with two juniors and two TPC Valencia members) set off on a shotgun start with more than just a purpose of going low. These juniors were afforded an opportunity to soak up the musing of industry professionals in the fields that they have pinpointed as possible career paths.

The marquee group that afternoon featured two TPC Valencia members with prominent roles in the business/finance world. Richard Bontempi, senior vice president of real estate at 1st Enterprise Bank, and James Forsyth, financial advisor and vice president at UBS Financial Services, Inc., served as the residence experts of the business world.

One of the two lucky juniors immersing themselves in the business experts’ words of wisdom was Mallory Muehlbauer, an SCGA Junior Scholar and a Business Administration major at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She learned the value of utilizing a specific professional social media platform.

“The best piece of advice I received was the need to set up a LinkedIn profile,” said Muehlbauer. “They emphasized having the connections on hand and in an organized manner to use in the future because you never know who you’ll meet.”

The other beneficiary of the knowledge being passed along was another Scholar, Nicholas Moreno. A finance major at Carnegie Mellon University, Moreno has been on the search for a mentor and opportunity came knocking.

“I was really looking forward to this day,” said Moreno. “The most important thing that I learned from both Richard and James is to really figure out what you want to do and follow that passion. Short-term goals are great, but really find a long-term goal that makes you happy.”

This Play Day wasn’t just a one-way street. For our grizzled industry veterans, a little youthful exuberance goes a long way towards feeling good about the future and the people who will be making the decisions someday.

“Both of the juniors I played with today are on their way to whatever career paths they choose,” said an impressed Forsyth. “Both are incredibly well-spoken and well-mannered, which is refreshing to see. Having the ability to talk about business and pass along some good advice is rewarding from my end too.”

A mutually beneficial day for all of those involved, relationships were cultivated and mentors were born.

SCGA Play Days bring active SCGA Junior participants to private clubs for the day to experience a special round of golf and mentoring with club members. These events are invite only, and are provided to kids actively engaged with the SCGA Junior Golf Club. Many of these juniors would not have the opportunity to experience a private club without the Play Day program.