Local golfer to tee off on world's oldest golf course in Scotland
KITCHENER -- A Kitchener teen is getting the chance of a lifetime to study and play on the world's oldest golf course in Scotland.
Victoria Gates, who graduated from high school this year, turned down scholarships for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
She's been golfing since she was a young girl.
"As I got older, I started falling in love with the game," Gates said.
She started playing competitively, going to tournaments and joining the golf team at Huron Heights high school in Kitchener.
"I was the only girl on the team, but it was still fun," she said.
Gates was offered scholarships to several American universities.
"It was all academics, I've always been focused on academics first," she said. "I've always tried to get good marks and then I used those to get into schools."
But an opportunity came along that she couldn't pass up, when St. Andrews College in Scotland accepted her application.
St. Andrews College is home to the oldest golf course in the world, known as the Home of Golf.
Her coach said it's a privilege to play on that course.
"It's the original golf course," Brody Whetham said. "So, for her to be able to have that golf course as her backyard to go and play is definitely something for her to remember for the rest of her life."
Whetham said he isn't surprised by Gates' success.
"She's had injuries and all these different things, so definitely work ethic, I throw all these different ideas and she works like a horse at it," he said.
Gates said she's looking forward to get into the zone and swing some clubs on the old course.
She leaves for Scotland at the end of August and will be studying economics.