The Gateway PGA REACH Foundation and Urban KLIFE announce the high-school graduation and college commitments of seven seniors

Tamyra and Shakyra Poke are two of seven seniors that Urban KLIFE & the Gateway PGA REACH Foundation are proud to see finish their high-school careers and, through the community of golf, reach college. Urban KLIFE’s PGA REACH Coordinator, Jerome Harris, has been with these students since their freshman year of high school, helping them through the ups and downs of high-school life in North St. Louis. Both Tamyra and Shakyra, who are also fraternal twin sisters, have seen firsthand as golf became a vital part of their support system and growth through Jerome, Urban KLIFE and the Gateway PGA REACH Foundation.

“Academics coupled with their support system, these girls avoided being put out of school or being in a very bad position,” Harris said. “Thankfully, they stuck it out. They changed their friendships because a lot of their friendships weren’t really good for them in school.”

The past four years of programming through Urban KLIFE and the Gateway PGA REACH Foundation have kept students involved in activities and included college tours, caddie internships at Bellerive Country Club and volunteering as standard bearers during the 100th PGA Championship.

The Polk twins were some of the first students to be involved in the caddie program and were able to forever be a part of history while volunteering as standard bearers at the 100th PGA Championship.

“That opened up some doors for them to also be a part of the 100th PGA Championship,” Harris said.

Midway through high school and the normal ups and downs of their teenage years, they lost everything. Their sophomore year was marred by a house fire that consumed everything and forced their family to stay in a hotel for a time. However, with the help of their family and Urban KLIFE, they persevered past that pain and adversity.

“The resiliency of these young ladies called them to step up and work even harder in school and just kind of (pushed) through life,” Harris said.

Now, years later, Tamyra and Shakyra are proud graduates of Clyde C. Miller Career Academy. Both were accepted into about 10-18 colleges and universities and ultimately committed to Southeastern Missouri State University (SEMO) where they will begin college in the Fall of 2019. For their hard work, the Polk sisters have earned enough scholarship money to pay for a large percentage of their schooling. Urban KLIFE and the Gateway PGA REACH Foundation are also proud to announce the graduations, college commitments and scholarships of all the seniors this year.

Tamyra and Shakyra will both attend Southeastern Missouri State University; Dametria Williams will attend the University of Dubuque; Genesis Peck will attend the University of Missouri St. Louis; Endiah Jones will attend St. Louis Community College; Aaron Hayes will attend Missouri State University; Zikel West will attend the University of Iowa.