Her love of golf started when she was four years old. Now 17, Angelica Harris has won local, regional and national golf tournaments, been featured three times on the Golf Channel for her accomplishments, and now is one of Louisiana’s state finalists for the prestigious Wendy’s High School Heisman Program honoring exceptional high school student-athletes who exemplify the Heisman ideals.
Such an honor fits well into Angelica’s personal goals to attend an Ivy League school and continue to play golf. She’ll graduate this year from Louisiana Connections Academy, a free public, completely online charter school.
“At LACA, I was provided with a flexible, yet challenging academic schedule that allowed me to practice golf daily without falling behind in my grade level,” said Angelica.
The online charter school allows athletes like Angelica to work their training and competition schedule into their daily studies. In fact, the school scheduling is flexible enough for an upper-classman like Angelica that the star athlete started a golf program at Chartwell Center, school for children with autism.
“My golf program is called Angelica’s Angels. I go to Chartwell Center every week teaching the students how to play golf, follow healthy eating habits, and share the life lessons learned through golf. I am in the process of purchasing Chartwell their own golf set for their P.E. program which costs $3200. So far, I have raised over $600.” said Angelica.
In fact, Angelica has her own custom flip-flop business which she started when she was 10-years-old, that underscores her national leadership qualities.
The 20-year-old Wendy’s High School Heisman Program recognizes one male and one female exceptional student athlete from each state.
The program provides a platform where students are acknowledged and rewarded for their hard work and also inspired to continue their success.
“This award gave me the confidence knowing that all of my hard work is paying off; I’m motivated to continue studying and practicing sedulously.” said Angelica.
Her teachers and classmates are hoping Angelica will be chosen one of 10 National Finalists in New York City on December 11and recognized during the collegiate Heisman Trophy announcement on ESPN on December 12.
“We’re so proud of Angelica and her parents for working so hard,” said LACA Headmaster Glenda Jones. “She exhibits all the qualities of someone who will improve and enhance their community.”
“Angelica exhibits the type of dedication that makes virtual schooling such a good fit for students that need something other than a traditional brick and mortar school to make their dreams and ambitions come true,” said High School Principal Shaunnessy Matthews. “She has a big heart too.”
Louisiana Connections Academy provides a K-12 public education with certified Louisiana teachers completely over a student’s home computer, where they meet with other students online daily for instruction, testing and study.
"LACA allows Angelica the opportunity to pursue many more activities while getting a quality education,” said Dad Tim Harris. “An online school teaches her discipline, time-management, and independence. "
The young student was recently honored as one of GAMBIT WEEKLY’s 40 under 40 winners. Angelica was honored for overcoming her own learning disability, dyslexia, and becoming a National Honor Society Scholar and Beta Club member. She started LACA in the 11th grade in order to dedicate more time to her life-long passion: golf.
Here is a link to Angelica’s GolfChannel.com interview: http://www.golfchannel.com/media/first-tee-preparing-kids-future/