In an interview with HCA Alum, Joshua, we learned about the incredible power of staying positive, working hard, and encouraging others as he overcomes his own obstacles living with Autism. While at HCA, Josh participated in football and golf, and he played hockey for another organization at the same time. Read about the HCA graduate who continues to share God's love in all situations. Nothing will stop Joshua from making a difference in other people's lives
1. What was your favorite part of going to school at HCA?
"My favorite part of going to HCA was the start of my junior year. I started looking up scripture verses related to sports and setting them up as character goals to inspire and encourage every sports team to stay positive and show Christ-like character all year."
2. When did you graduate from HCA?
"I graduated from HCA in 2013. Then, I attended the University of North Texas from Fall 2013 through Fall 2014. After UNT, I transferred to Golf Academy of America in Dallas and graduated from GAA in the spring of 2016."
3. Where are you currently working?
"I have worked at Iron Horse Golf Course in North Richland Hills for 5 years and will continue to work there as long as possible for my golf career. I am friends with PGA golfers Ernie Els, Ryan Palmer, Jordan Spieth and Greg Chalmers. Ernie's son, Ben; Jordan's sister, Ellie; and Greg's son, Max, have autism like me, and I do my best to support Ernie, Jordan, and Greg for Ben, Ellie, and Max while they play golf. In addition to the golf course, I have been working with The Lone Star (Fort Worth) Brahmas as their Chaplain & Assistant Equipment Manager for the last 8 years. I am known as "The Heart & Soul" because I send players character goals and scripture before games just like I did at HCA. For the Dallas Stars, I'm friends with their equipment managers and current player, John Klingberg. John's younger brother, Olle, played with the Brahmas, and that's how I met John. Now, I send him and other Stars players encouragement, character goals, and scripture before their games!" Josh enjoys golf & hockey at the same time because they both have been a passion since he was 5 years old.
4. Can you tell us about the kid's golf camp you helped teach?
"While teaching the kids in golf, I help them get used to the different areas of the game of golf so they can know what to do when they play on their own someday. I also help teach the kids with autism. I work hard to help them get a passion for the game of golf and help them overcome the same challenges I faced as a kid."
5. Will you explain how being diagnosed with autism does not stop you from accomplishing your goals and dreams?
"After I was diagnosed with autism at age 3, I was struggling with speech therapy to help improve my social skills. Later, sports helped me overcome a lot of challenges, and I have been working really hard to be known as a "Heart & Soul" person like I am right now. This is what I want to do with golf and hockey for the rest of my life."
Keep up the great work, Joshua! HCA is proud of your work ethic, dedication, and positive attitude in all situations.