Legendary golfer and Presidential Medal of Freedom honoree Tiger Woods recently won the 2019 Masters Tournament for his 15th major victory and first title in 11 years. His success off the course, however, deserves its own highlight reel. Over two decades ago, Woods established the TGR Foundation, whose mission is to empower minority students through education and to create community-based programs that provide necessary resources for students to succeed.
Since founding the TGR Foundation in 1996 with his father, Tiger and the Woods family have established a variety of programs to provide underserved 6-12 grade students with unique STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning experiences in a positive, safe environment. Over 20 years later, the foundation has succeeded in reaching over 5,000 educators to bring 165,000 students — including 85,000 girls — access to STEM education and to introduce them to STEM careers.
“Hitting a golf shot isn’t going to make anything better,” said Woods. “What we’re going to do, beyond our lifetimes, is lead education into the future. And that to me is far more important than anything I have ever won. ...There are so many kids who have talent but they don’t have the opportunity. We’re giving them the opportunity.”
Through its signature Learning Lab and other highly-esteemed programs, the foundation continues to achieve considerable impact, with 87 percent of students in its programs beginning to develop career plans and 91 percent reportedly increasing their confidence about their futures. The TGR Foundation also boasts a college graduation rate of 98.7 percent, with 97 percent of students becoming the first in their families to attend college.
The Earl Woods Scholar program, named after Tiger Woods' late father, helps make college attendance possible for many of these students. Launched in 2007, the program provides financial assistance to high-potential students as well as mentoring and counseling support, internship opportunities, career development, and enrichment workshops.
Aiming to make an even greater impact by serving millions of children annually, the TGR Foundation launched a collaborative partnership with Discovery Education in 2017 to digitize the TGR curriculum and provide resources for educators and K-12 classrooms around the world. Through the TGR EDU: Explore initiative, the foundation now offers STEM classes in a variety of disciplines, including sports science, video game design, coding, civil engineering, urban planning, human anatomy, and oceanography.
Along with its digital offerings, the TGR Foundation offers its learning programs and opportunities on-site in Washington, D.C., South Florida, Philadelphia, MCB Quantico, New York, Southern California and more.
Learn more about the TGR Foundation here.