A self-proclaimed “out-of-the-box thinker,” Orange Lutheran senior golfer Drew Formsma has not had the typical student athlete experience during his high school years.
But that is just fine with him.
Formsma got his start on the links as a freshman Lancer, and while he enjoyed it, he desired to get better. So he spent his sophomore year playing and practicing each day to improve his skill set.
“A lot of my friends played, so [I thought] I’d play it too,” says Formsma. “I know it’s a lifelong sport, so I wanted to be good at it.”
His hard work and investment were rewarded as Formsma moved up the ranks, working his way onto the JV team and then varsity. As with many golfers, the mental side of the game has been his biggest hurdle, but keeping the big picture in perspective has kept him steady.
“All our lives we have to figure out how to deal with anxiety, how to deal with pressure and how to deal with hard situations,” says Formsma. “It’s honestly about how you can overcome those. Life is bigger than the sport…we’re here for something bigger than the game. That thinking helps me in how I golf.”
As a senior leader in OLu’s golf program, Formsma knew he wasn’t the most talented player on the team, but he never let that stop him from guiding and leading his younger teammates through his encouraging and fun spirit.
“Drew is a steady player for us, but more importantly, Drew is a true leader for us,” says OLu boys golf head coach, Darren Kelso. “His leadership's base is his integrity and character.”
Formsma is one of the many Lancer students who have taken full advantage of Orange Lutheran Online (OLO), having been a blended student since his sophomore year. The flexible approach to learning and course completion offered by the program has allowed the 18-year old to maintain his participation in golf, as well as pursue his other passions – writing and speaking.
Inspired by his father’s organization, I Like Giving (ilikegiving.com), Formsma has shared his own passion for living generously through a book he wrote called, Everyday Generosity – Becoming a Generous Family in a Selfie World.
In the 2018 title, Formsma explains his perspective on generosity and helps peers and families realize that living generously is about more than just money. The positive response to his book and many speaking engagements have led to a number of radio and television appearances, as well as the opportunity to give TEDx Talks on the topic.
Formsma is grateful for the OLu coaches and teachers who worked with him and remained flexible with his schedule over the years.
“We’re here to make a difference,” says Formsma. “We’re here to change the world. If God gives us a vision to do something, we should do it. We all have different passions, and we all have different gifts. Speaking and communicating is one of mine. It’s been amazing to see the impact through that.”
Formsma’s future plans will likely remain in the same vein as his high school years – flexible, creative and non-conforming – as he finds a path that blends his passions and his goals. He refers to his father as his “true role model,” and it is his faith that will guide him through his next steps, wherever that road may take him.
“I believe in God, and I believe that I should continue to try to live like him,” says Formsma. “I know I’ll mess up, and I know I’ll make mistakes, and I know I’ll get things wrong. It’s about the relationship and continuing to dive deeper into that. I still have a long way to go, but I think golf has definitely brought some struggles and some great successes. Both of those have brought me closer to God.”