Competitive Golfer and Laurel Springs High Schooler Henry Guan Selected for U.S. National Junior Team

Put yourself in the shoes of a competitive high school golfer. You’re crushing junior competition across the country and are starting to receive invitations to exclusive amateur tournaments (the ones that really set you up for high-level success in the sport). Exciting, right?!

This is Henry Guan, a Laurel Springs High School student who just made the U.S. National Junior Team, an elite squad of athletes hand-selected by the United States Golf Association (USGA).

Now, picture Henry trying to balance his golf career while attending an in-person high school. He’s missing up to a week of school per month to accommodate tournaments, which makes it difficult to keep up with coursework and maintain strong grades. He’s also struggling to build out a personalized support system that understands his lifestyle and ambitions. Not so ideal.

Eager to find an alternative, Henry started asking around about virtual school. His friend Ethan Gao, a Laurel Springs Alumni who currently plays for Stanford’s Men’s Golf Team, recommended Laurel Springs online school. “He told me how great his experience had been, and so my family and I looked into it,” says Henry. “Turns out, it was exactly what I was looking for.”

Henry enrolled at Laurel Springs his freshman year and is now headed into 11th grade this fall. “My teachers are great, and it honestly feels like in-person school even though it’s online school, “ he shares. “We talk about NCAA eligibility and preparing for college in my seminar course, too, which is helpful.”

Needless to say, it’s the flexibility of Laurel Springs’ online curriculum that has been the largest game-changer for him. “I can do my school work whenever I want to, and because I can’t really do homework while I’m focusing on golf, this is something I really value.”

Making the U.S. National Junior Team

Henry Guan’s golf career is nothing short of impressive. The prestigious U.S. National Junior Team represents the top young golfers in the country, so being hand-picked for this opportunity is an honor. “I am stoked because I know how big of a deal this is,” says Henry.

Players are selected for the team based on scoring, results, statistics, rankings, sportsmanship and scouting. Members participate in camps twice a year and compete internationally. Henry currently looks forward to the first international match happening in Australia this summer.

Furthermore, athletes on the U.S. National Junior Team receive “year-round support, including world-class coaching and analysis, sports psychology and nutritional guidance,” mentions the United States Golf Association in their recent press release. The U.S. National Development Program also plans to “collaborate with players’ home coaches and support teams to ensure they have the resources necessary to develop the physical, mental and life skills to reach their potential.”

AJGA Invitationals, Amateur Competition, and Words to Live By

Prior to the exciting recognition mentioned above, Henry was already crushing AJGA junior tournaments and competing in one-off amateur tournaments across the country. These amateur events, typically held at renowned golf courses like Pinehurst (USGA’s headquarters) and in states like Ohio, Kentucky, and Rhode Island, serve as important stepping stones for young golfers aspiring for high-level competition and professional careers in the sport.

“It’s intimidating sometimes,” shares Henry. “You see so many people out there wanting to be great. This is why I really try to focus on doing things my own way and not let anyone else impact how I play my golf game.”

Henry further emphasizes the importance of neglecting the “noise” on social media, in the news, or heard amongst competition on the course. “I just focus on being different. I think about what I’m hearing inside of myself instead of what’s being said on the outside.”

What’s next for Henry Guan?

It’s hard to not be inspired by Henry’s ambitions and resilience! As he continues to climb the ranks in the competitive golf world, he serves as an incredible example for other student-athletes who dream of balancing their sport with a top college-prep education. With all of us here at Laurel Springs on his side, there isn’t a doubt that Henry will continue to excel in both areas. We can’t wait to see what else the future holds for this superstar golf athlete!

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Laurel Springs School

Laurel Springs School

Laurel Springs is a fully accredited, private online school for K-12 students. With a premier college-prep online curriculum including AP and Honors courses, an ever-expanding schedule of in-person and virtual events, and a global community spanning over 100 countries, we’re ranked as one of the top online private schools in the nation.

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