Teeing It Up
Golf was important to Drew Nelson ’17 when he was an Academic All-American at Dominican earning his Bachelor of Arts degree in business. He didn’t know then that golf would become the link to receiving a scholarship that is allowing him to pursue a Master’s of Science (MSc) in Management with a focus in Finance at Durham University in England.
Drew accepted a postgraduate scholarship from Play Overseas, a program that helps graduates of NCAA/NAIA institutions identify postgraduate athletic scholarship opportunities that allow them the chance to continue their student-athlete career in the United Kingdom. A three-time Pacific West Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year in golf, Drew arrived at Durham in September of 2018 and left two days later to compete in a tournament with its golf team. They play on such renowned golf courses as Royal St. George’s and St. Andrews.
“This is absolutely a win-win for me. I get to live in fantasy land for another year by studying for a master's and competing in golf again, all while experiencing a new country and culture,” says Drew, who was working as a financial analyst at Central Coast VNA & Hospice in Hollister before accepting the scholarship.
“Getting my master’s has always been a long-term goal. I know it will propel me to the next level professionally and, for the time being, I am just going to ride the breeze and smell the roses as I embark on my journey.”
The journey started at Dominican where Drew’s concentration was finance in the Barowsky School of Business. Drew, who graduated from Robert Louis Stevenson School in Pebble Beach, interned at Granite Construction’s headquarters in Watsonville as a financial analyst and later, in the same role, interned at Hayward Lumber Company in Monterey.
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“My experiences at Dominican taught me about time management and prioritizing my responsibilities, which helped me in the workplace during the last year as well,” Drew says. “Golf is arguably the most demanding sport at Dominican as we miss quite a bit of class for tournaments, so it is always important to be on top of your priorities. I will be able to draw from the opportunities Coach Gary Nelson and the Dominican golf team provided me on the golf course as well as the challenges I was presented with in the classroom in order to succeed at Durham.”
Drew learned about Playing Overseas from a friend who earned her master’s degree at Cambridge University. Once he received a postgraduate scholarship, Drew considered three different universities in England: Hertfordshire University, Bournemouth University, and Durham University.
“Durham is an extremely reputable university, as it is ranked inside the Top 5 UK universities and Top 100 universities worldwide. The school also has a phenomenal reputation among employers worldwide as they prepare their students extremely well for the work world,” Drew says. “The golf program is extremely good, so I feel I can come into the school and make an impact in the classroom, but also on the golf course, and that is something I pride myself in.”