News & Media
Below are stories and news items about Providence Day School and/or the PDS community that originated from the school or have appeared in various media outlets.
By Hannah Chronis
South Charlotte Weekly, Dec. 5, 2014
Providence Day junior Roshnee Sharma said her life changed for the better two years ago when her father’s business relocated from Richmond Hill, Ontario to Charlotte.
She was 13 years old at the time, and though the move meant adjusting to American culture and making new friends, she knew it would have an immediate positive impact on her golf game.
Sharma began playing the game at the young age of 6, but was limited in her development by the lack of accessible courses in Richmond Hill. Since moving to North Carolina, she’s transformed into one of the Charlotte area’s best golfers in the span of just two years. At the Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association conference tournament this season, Sharma finished in second place behind Cannon’s Anna Redding. At the NCISAA state tournament, her two-day 146 made her the tournament runner-up and an all-state selection. After a wildly successful season, Sharma is now the 2014 South Charlotte Weekly Golfer of the Year.
Despite her standout performances, Sharma said the recognition and championship-worthy performances came as a surprise.
“It’s definitely been incredible,” she said. “I’ve been working really, really hard, but this was still unexpected. I didn’t expect to perform as well as I did because it’s my first year playing tournaments in a long time because of the move. I’ve spent a lot of time working on my swing, and it’s paying off.”
Sharma works in conjunction with her father, who’s helped develop her game from the time she received her first putter nearly a decade ago. She said it’s been his encouragement and perseverance that’s helped catapult her career.
“My dad is my coach, but we’re more like a team,” she said. “We’re students of the game. It excites us both so much to learn about the golf swing and create shots. I remember when we lived in Canada, he would practice his swing inside and I would think, ‘That’s the most fascinating thing I’ve ever seen.’ When he gave me a U.S. kids’ set, it was one of the greatest moments of my life.”
Sharma’s natural talent is obvious – over the summer she fired a final-round 71 to win the Eighth Carolinas Junior Girls 15-and-under championship – but the humble star credits her success to her love of the game.
After a demanding academic schedule at Providence Day, Sharma heads to the Club at Longview where she’s on the course for three or four hours a day, even in chilling winter temperatures. But for Sharma, it’s hardly considered practice.
“We’re always trying to get better and try something new and there’s nowhere I’d rather be than on the course,” she said. “For me, the hardest part is transferring from the golfing mind to the academic mind, but I think that’s one of the most fun things as well. I love challenging myself.”
When Sharma isn’t on the course or studying, she’s busy implementing her latest venture – a nonprofit organization she founded called ARFNA (The American Research Foundation for Nut Allergies).
Sharma suffers from a peanut allergy so severe that she must wear gloves on the course when going to shake someone’s hand. But the allergy hasn’t inhibited her abilities, and she’s using it as motivation to contribute to society.
“I’ve been focusing on what I can do for society,” she said. “There are a lot of people who suffer like I do and they probably think, ‘I can’t do the things that other people can do.’ I want to not only find a cure for it but I want people to know they can have a normal lifestyle. All of this as spawned because of golf. If I never played golf, I would never have the courage and motivation to start my own charity.”
With her senior year ahead of her, Sharma not only hopes to improve her tournament play and success on the Charger team, but she hopes to begin generating interest from colleges and continue developing ARFNA.
She said none of it would be possible if it weren’t for golf.
“Golf is one of the best teachers in life,” she said. “It teaches you how to bring your body, mind and emotions under control. When it’s in sync, it gives you the opportunity to perform your best while at the same time, when it’s not, you can’t. I think that really teaches me a lot deep down. I think it also teaches a lot about character and morals. The integrity of the game relates to real life and it gives you a confidence knowing you can be a good person and good citizen.
“In real life and golf, you have to do what’s in your power. In golf, you can hit a great shot, but the wind picks up and then it’s in the bunker. You can sit around and cry or you can pick up and do something. That’s one of the most important things about golf and real life. We can do what’s in our power and we can contribute. Golf has really helped me grow as a person. I love it. It’s everything.”