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Wesley Hess Golf Professional and Pro-Shop Team at Arrowood Golf Course

Jun 14, 2013

Success is a very subjective term that depends on who you are, what you like and most of all, what your goals are. My definition of success is achieving goals, though sometimes having or finding a goal is the hardest step. So when I got an opportunity to attend the Golf Academy of America, I knew I had to create then accomplish some personal goals to get myself where I wanted to be.

I am a native of North County/San Diego. I started golfing when I was fourteen as a hobby for after school and free time. There was a golf course convenient to my home, so it made sense. Because I was involved in soccer and football on my high school teams, I never took the game seriously. When I got the opportunity to start working at Oceanside Municipal GC, I thought it would be fun to challenge myself to get better at a sport that is as easy to love as it is to hate.

While working in the cart barn and snack bar, I was also attending a local community college. I had no idea what I wanted to study or what I was even doing in school. I didn't have any goals. One day I was talking with a friend at the golf course and he mentioned the Golf Academy of America. I did some research and realized that the golf industry really did fascinate me, and I knew it was something I would always love to do. I had made up my mind before consulting with the school that this was my path to a golf career, something I truly wanted.

My main goals at GAA were simple: meet a lot of great people, and become a great golfer. With hard work, an open mind and a great support system, I accomplished much more than I expected in 16 months. I took advantage of the instructors and their time, and I experimented with different swing philosophies and types. When I joined the school, I was roughly a 12 handicap--I had never broken 80 and had no tournament experience to speak of. By the end of the school my handicap index was 1.6 and I had broken par, which was a huge goal of mine. I attribute this not only to my hard work and focus, but also to the effort of the GAA staff.

After completing the coursework at GAA, I was immediately offered a job at Arrowood Golf Course. It is close to home and one of the best courses in San Diego County, so I was extremely thrilled when they hired me to work in the pro shop. I also had the opportunity to start giving lessons and truly make what I learned at the GAA real. That was more than a year ago, and I am still committed and working towards the new goals that the GAA has helped me set. I give lessons regularly, work full time hours, and get to play golf as often as I can/want. I truly consider my GAA experience and my life a success. Though I know I have a long road ahead of me, I now have the confidence, drive and focus that I need to achieve more goals and form my future success.

Wesley Hess is a Golf Academy of America in San Diego Alumnus.