Master of Golf: Diana Hong

This week, we had the chance to interview golf player Diana Hong. Growing up in Sacramento, Hong transferred from Washington State to University of San Francisco in fall 2008 where she studies sociology, and is graduating this coming May. She agreed to talk to us about some aspects of her life, and about her primary passion: golf.

How old were you when you started playing golf?
I believe I was 11 or 12. It’s hard to remember these things at my old age (laughter).

What made you want to be a golfer?
My dad’s friend took me to the driving range because I was talking smack about golfers, how they were just old men and how boring golf was. After the first bucket, I was hooked. For me, there is nothing else like it. This is the best roller coaster ride, ever.

You’re a transferred student from Washington State. Why did you decide to come to USF?

I wanted to go back to California, and I always had a soft spot for San Francisco. I mean let’s be honest, people come from all over the world just to visit here. How awesome would it be to say: “Yeah, it’s no big deal, I live here!”

As a golfer, how is your experience different here from the one you had in Washington State?

Nothing is really that different because the practice facilities were far away at Washington State, too. But my experience as a USF student and a resident of San Francisco makes this experience so much more different.  I wouldn’t know where to begin.

Golf is a sport that has little visibility at USF. How do you feel about that?
Golf in general has little visibility at the collegiate level, so I’m used to it. But it is a little irritating when people say: “Oh, I didn’t know we had a golf team.”

Do you think golf will ever be popular at this school? How?
Probably not. Although interest in athletics have seem to improve a little bit, I don’t think golf would get up there. It’s just one of those sports. Maybe if there was a home tournament at a course that students have access too. That’s the main problem with golf: most people can’t go to the tournaments and it is difficult to watch.

You’ve been injured a lot this past year. How did this affect you and your game?
“A lot” might be an understatement. Being injured has changed my whole outlook on life. Going from being all about golf to practically not having it in my life was a drastic change that took a lot of getting used it. It helped me see what life was like outside of golf, and it probably mellowed me out more. That gave me a different and new appreciation on life. As far as my game, that was and still is a battle to get back to where I used to be. Coming back from an injury has given me a new understanding and appreciation for the word “patience.”

How is the season going for you and the team?
This season has been a little rough but we are doing better and I know the ladies and myself are excited to finish it off strong.

You are graduating soon. What are your plans after you graduate?
Oh don’t remind me! (laughter) The real world is scary.  The only thing I planned is to stay in San Francisco. The rest of it … I’m just going to see what life has in store for me.

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