As a new student attending a new school, most people would look to join existing clubs that interest them. Senior Adam Gracik chose a different route and decided to create a club that interested him.
In the fall of 2015, Gracik transferred to DePaul as a sophomore from the University of Missouri. He soon realized that DePaul had no club golf team, so the lifelong golf advocate took it into his own hands to start one. Gracik played golf for three years at York Community High School in Elmhurst, as well as baseball for four and football for one. Since starting the Club Golf team two years ago, he and the team have found success on and off the course.
“Starting the Club Golf team here has benefitted me in more ways than I thought it possibly could when I transferred here in 2015,” Gracik said. “After serving on SAF-B at DePaul last school year, I truly see how much each club can mean to the student body.”
When it comes to success, former Vice President Nick Petrakos said, “qualifying for Nationals two out of the first four semesters as a team is pretty good in my book.”
Petrakos was one of three graduates from the team in the spring.
“(Being part of a club) helped me most with team working and networking amongst students from other schools,” said Petrakos. “The people I have met and people I have been able to work with have been great.”
Now, it’s Gracik’s job to replace them and keep the competition level high throughout the club. Gracik is finally getting a hold of the workload between school, work and golf.
“At first, it was stressful, but as we’ve grown over the past two years, I’ve figured out ways to simplify things,” Gracik said. “Saving myself time.
“I am the director of tournament Operations for The National Club Golf Association. I also work for the Illinois PGA (Profesional Golf Associtation) two days a week, since I am able to trim down my schedule during the school year.”
As Gracik’s last year at DePaul approaches, he is starting to plan for the team to succeed after he graduates.
“I am currently in the process of figuring out roles for the future of the club,” Gracik said. “I will have three to four members run the team once I leave.
“I currently have a treasurer and a media manager that assist me tremendously. Three past executive board members of the team have graduated, but without their help the past two years, it’d be difficult to be where we are now,” Gracik said.
The people involved in the club have high hopes for the team’s future when Gracik moves on.
“Adam has the club going in the right direction,” Petrakos said. “He has shown to take initiative and control of all situations and events. I see it only growing and becoming more successful from here.”
Sophomore Joey Fremgen says he will look to fill part of Gracik’s role as head of the club.
“Adam has done a great job of getting me and others prepared for his departure during my first year in the club,” Fremgen said. “I look forward to helping as much as I can to make this club successful in my final few years here at DePaul. The plan is to be in Vegas at the start of December for the Fall National Championship.”
DePaul Club Golf began its third season this past weekend with a runner-up finish at the first of two Great Lakes Regional tournaments. University of Illinois won the event.