Caitlin Marcus of Tenafly, a caddie at Knickerbocker Country Club, has just a handful of days before she begins the next big chapter in her life – that of an Evans Scholar at the University of Michigan.
There, she will join her brother Tommy, who like Caitlin, earned a Western Golf Association Evans Scholarship, and was only the second caddie from New Jersey to win the full tuition scholarship.
This year, Caitlin and Samantha Boehmcke of Spring Lake Golf Club became the fourth and fifth New Jersey caddies to earn Evans Scholarships. The third is Tyler Citron of Springfield, a caddie at Baltusrol Golf Club, who is entering his senior year at Indiana University.
On Monday, Aug. 21, the day of the total eclipse, Caitlin Marcus was on hand to take part in the 15thNew Jersey Evans Scholars Classic, in conjunction with the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation, which has raised more than $400,000 on behalf of Evans Scholars.
The event was partially funded by the Investors Foundation, which bequeathed a grant of $2,500.
The Investors Foundation assists organizations in New Jersey, New York City and Long Island that invigorate their local communities with civic-minded initiatives focused on the arts, education, health and human services, youth programs and more.
“I’m so glad to be part of an event (N.J. Evans Scholar Classic) that supports the future of caddies like me,” said Ms. Marcus, who was leaving for Michigan on Aug. 24. “Evans Scholarships help fulfill their dreams and their educations.
“I have been meeting wonderful people all day and introducing myself to them as an Evans Scholar. I can’t wait to get out there,” said Ms. Marcus, who is considering a major in computer science. She has visited the Evans House on campus where her brother has resided during his career at Michigan.
Among former Evans Scholars that Ms. Marcus was introduced to were Gene Barry, University of Illinois, Class of 1967. Mr. Barry, a native of LeGrange, Ill., and resident of Princeton, spent the bulk of his career as an engineer and manager at Johnson & Johnson. He spent four years (1992-96) working in Hong Kong. Mr. Barry was one of four Evans Scholarship alumni taking part in the N.J. Evans Scholars Classic.
“Both organizations (New Jersey State Golf Association and Western Golf Association) work closely to promote caddie scholars. This is our 15thyear of this event,” said Tom Paluck of Baltusrol and Somerset Hills, a former Evans Scholar. Mr. Paluck, an Evans Scholar at the Michigan State University, Class of 1962, and former NJSGA president, initiated the event. He hoped New Jersey caddies might get the same academic opportunity that the Evans Foundation extended to him years ago.
“New Jersey is now up to five Evans Scholars. As long as this event carries on, Evans Scholarships for New Jersey caddies will continue to grow. Each year that we continue the event continues to support future caddie scholars,” Mr. Paluck said.
The Classic, originally scheduled for Aug. 7, was postponed due to rain. Still, more than 100 golfers were on hand two weeks later.
Rick Wolffe, a portfolio manager for TSP Capital Management and frequent participant thanked Investors Foundation for contributing to the N.J. Evans Scholars Classic.
“It’s a great honor to have Investors Foundation as part of our Founders Circle. Their contribution helps keep the caddie in golf. It helps young men and women achieve their dreams in education,” Mr. Wolffe said.
Evans Scholars universities are located primarily in the Midwest and many represent the Big 10 Conference. Notre Dame is the newest member. It is hoped with the addition of Rutgers University to the Big 10, and possibly to the Western Golf Association, that someday many more New Jersey caddies will have an opportunity to earn Evans scholarships.
Since the Evans’ inception in 1930, the Foundation has generated over $100 million in scholarship awards to more than 10,000 recipients.
Caddie scholarships have become a primary addition to the world of golf in not only New Jersey, but throughout the country. On the East Coast, the NJSGA has become one of the staunchest associations to work with Evans Scholars.
The NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation also supports caddies who display a great academic performance, financial need, and quality service as a caddie. This year, the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation will award 148 caddies who will receive a total of more than $650,000.
Now in its 70thyear, the NJSGA CSF has raised more than $13 million and nearly 3,000 caddies have received college tuition grants from the NJSGA. In honor of the 70-year milestone, the NJSGA Caddie Scholarship Foundation is conducting a campaign to award even more in tuition grants to young men and women in New Jersey.
The first full-tuition Evans Scholars caddies from New Jersey was the graduated Sean Thornton of Green Brook Country Club who also attended the University of Michigan.