By Rich Palzewic
LUXEMBURG – For two Luxemburg-Casco High School seniors, their dreams became reality when they both recently received the Chick Evans Scholarship.
Jesse Gregorich and Luke Larson, who will both attend UW-Madison and study engineering this fall, were among 19 Wisconsin high school seniors who were awarded the full, four-year housing and tuition caddying scholarship.
The scholarship is valued at an estimated $120,000 over four years.
Each recipient had to demonstrate a strong caddie record, excellent academics, financial need and possess outstanding character.
Currently, 1,010 caddies are enrolled at 18 universities across the nation as Evans Scholars, and more than 11,050 caddies have graduated as Evans Scholars since the program was founded by Chicago amateur golfer Charles “Chick” Evans Jr. in 1930.
When the 2019-20 selection meeting process is completed, an estimated 285 caddies are expected to be awarded the Evans Scholarship.
Gregorich and Larson both began caddying during the summer before their sophomore year at the Northbrook Country Club in Luxemburg.
“This scholarship means lots to me,” said Gregorich, who was on the track and field team at LC. “The financial aspect of college is a big burden on students, so I won’t have to worry about that anymore. It will allow me to focus on school.”
Gregorich’s older sister and brother also received the Evans Scholarship.
“I knew what to expect before I applied,” he said. “I put in about 110 caddying rounds during my time at Northbrook.”
Like his classmate, Larson also put in approximately 110 caddying rounds and had two older siblings receive the scholarship.
“Even though Jesse and I caddied at the same course, we tried to stay separate,” said Larson, who was also on the track team. “A group of golfers doesn’t usually take more than one caddy.”
Larson said he did about four or five rounds a week throughout the season for three years.
“I’ve done a little golfing but not much,” he said. “When I’d caddy, I’d either carry or roll their clubs in the cart, clean their clubs and talk to them. If new golfers came to the course, I’d provide information on the holes.”
Being an Evans Scholar, there are special requirements the winners must adhere to in order to retain their scholarship.
Winners have to maintain above a 3.0-grade point average and take part in community service work.
“It’s a big thing for me to receive this scholarship,” Larson said. “Madison has always been my dream school, so if I hadn’t gotten the Evans Scholarship, I wouldn’t be able to afford to go there.”
Larson said he won’t continue caddying in the summers because he wants to give others seeking the scholarship more opportunities.