Lauren Tang grew up in San Francisco in a Chinese immigrant family. She describes feeling blessed to have grown up in such a wonderfully cultured melting pot of a city where she had the chance to meet many different people from all walks of life and had access to many great opportunities. Coming from an immigrant family, her parents often weren’t able to help her with her academics, but her parents and grandmother always did their best to guide her through life. While Lauren is a low-income, first-generation college student, rather than feeling disadvantaged by these labels, she is grateful for her unique upbringing and the hard-working role models she had in her home.
Seeking a community within her school, Lauren joined the golf team her freshman year of high school. In order to focus on honing her skills, she became a Youth on Course member to be able to practice more on the weekends, but found that she gained so much more than discounted green fees. Being a YOC member gave Lauren the chance to better connect with her high school golf teammates outside of after-school practices, as they were spending more time together and participating together in other Youth on Course activities. She created a strong bond and established long-lasting friendships and Lauren notes that these times with Youth on Course are some of her best memories from high school.
“Prior to joining golf, I had little team sports experience. Through YOC, I learned a lot of community values including how to be a better friend and a better teammate. I’ve experienced the joy of cheering for a friend when she hits a hole in one and I’ve been touched by the support of my teammates when I’m having a bad day on the course. These values have translated to and have guided me through other aspects of life.”
Lauren truly appreciates the lengths that YOC has gone to increase access to the sport for young people, and was very proud to receive a Youth on Course scholarship her senior year of high school. She is very thankful that the YOC scholarship relieved financial worries that she and her family had. She now studies Computer Science with interest in Entrepreneurship at Princeton University. She aspires to find what she’s best at and use that to make a meaningful impact on society. She hopes to do work that will alleviate problems that are particularly important to her including access to higher education, encouraging females to pursue STEM, environmental sustainability, and many more.