Thursday, February 21, 2013

International Athlete: A Personal Reflection

Life as a collegiate athlete can be both rewarding and difficult, but for an international athlete it is often complicated and lonely. Jacqueline Lau, a golfer at Tarleton State University, shares her story about life in America in a small Texas town.
What has been the toughest aspect of being an international athlete?
Being away from home is very hard. I can’t spend special occasions like birthdays and Chinese New Year with my family and loved ones back home in Malaysia. Not being able to do that for four years is tough. Also, English is not my first language so communication with others is difficult which makes school complicated because speaking in front of my classes makes me nervous.
What has been the most rewarding part of being an international athlete?
Having an awesome coach and teammates is the best reward. They are my family away from home. We all share our ups and downs together and I know that I am not alone because of them.
Any personal thoughts about living and playing golf in the United States?
Food is very different here but I like it a lot; however, I do miss ‘real’ Chinese food. It is also very clean here in the United States unlike some parts of my country. Having four seasons is a nice change; my home country is hot all year. When I am here at school I like to go out and do activities outside but at home in Malaysia I would rather stay indoors since it is always so hot and humid. I love playing golf here in the United States at Tarleton State University and would love to play some tournaments here after college and try to become a successful professional golfer here in the United States.


1 comment:

  1. Being an international athlete has to be so tough. I know personally when it came down to picking a college when I was in high school; I wanted the one closer to home. I think having the courage and ambition to just get up and move across the world because of a passion is so amazing. My freshman year when I was at UNT, I was friends with the tennis team and they were all foreign. I would always ask them tons of questions about how they liked the U.S. and how did it compare to their country. I think it is a great idea to stop and recognize the athletes that leave so much behind at home, travel across the world just to pursue their dreams.