As students across the country receive their offers for places at university, one Cornish student and England U18 golfer was in for a surprise when an American university not only offered him a scholarship but offered it a year early.

Currently in his first year studying the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Creative Media Production and Technology at Truro College, George Leigh, from Padstow, couldn’t believe it when the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) offered him a scholarship and the opportunity to play for one of the top college golf teams in the world.

“I’d been talking to them for about eight months and I went and visited there in January.

"They said there that they could offer me a scholarship, which was a nice surprise. I was talking to another university at the time but UNLV is one of the best golf teams in the world and it was a scholarship that I couldn’t really turn down,” said George.

George has played for England in various capacities over the past three years and hopes to use the scholarship to progress to a high a level as possible in the sport.

He added: “To get on the golf team at the university you have to qualify – they do their own qualifiers – but if you make it they travel to Hawaii, Australia, all around the world. Out there, it’s the way you turn pro now.

"To be one of the best in England happens very rarely but they have lots of Americans at the top of the rankings lists because of the college system out there. Of course, education comes first out there before sport but to represent the university is a really big thing and I can’t wait to start.”

While eager to begin his studies and training in America, George is still getting used to the fact he will be leaving a year early, saying: “Because of the early scholarship I’m not finishing my course here, which is a bit of a shock. In some ways it’s good that I can just get on and do what I want to do but I will miss a lot of people here.

“The college has been so supportive though. My tutor Cleo and my other lecturer Emily have been really supportive and really nice about it. There was a bit of a blip where I couldn’t pick media because out there they have NCAA, which is like our UCAS, and UAL Media wasn’t on the list so I had a bit of a panic but they helped me out lots with that.”

George will be heading off to America with a strong list of accolades to his name.

“Last year I got picked to play for England in the four boy’s squad to go to Italy to play against Scotland, Wales, Ireland and Holland and this year I got picked for the England boys’ squad U18 for the 2018/19 season. I’m also near enough one of the leading scorers in under 16’s,” said George.