My’Rese Jackson grew up a voracious reader. Her mother read to her daily as a baby, and as she got older her love for stories grew. Around the age of 16 however, My’Rese realized that as much as she enjoyed reading, she couldn’t relate to any of the characters in books she read.
“I feel like I wasn’t seeing myself in books, at least in the right ways…and I feel like books should represent how the real world works…If we’re going to be inclusive, which is essential to literature, I feel like we need to have more narratives of people from various backgrounds.”
My’Rese decided to take action and get involved in the world of literature. She turned to writing as a form of therapy and to help analyze herself and the world around her, often casting female characters at the forefront of her short stories.
This lack of representation in literature paralleled her experience as a female African American golfer. She says that her peers didn’t quite understand her interest in golf and there were social stigmas around the sport in general.
“My classmates had all these assumptions about the whole “prestigious” stigma…and they have all these preconceptions about what golf is…I was very much aware of how much of a lack of representation there was in golf.”
Though golf wasn’t the most popular sport in her community, My’Rese recognized the ways that the sport was positively impacting her life. She says that golf taught her organizational and communication skills, keeping calm in pressure situations, and helped her develop as a leader, all qualities that led her to become class president and someone her peers looked up to. She felt that even though her peers didn’t quite understand her love of the sport, they saw her poised, confident demeanor and associated that strongly with the fact that she was a golfer.
She hopes that her accomplishments on and off the course (being Senior class president, receiving the Sally Morton 2017 YOC Scholarship, and recently publishing her first novel SiO4 to name a few) gave her classmates a little bit of a different perspective on golf, as a developmental activity and an alternative to the more popular sports in her community.
My’Rese is currently in her sophomore year at UCLA pursuing a degree in English.
We are very proud to have had My’Rese as a Youth on Course member and Scholarship recipient and look forward to seeing where her future takes her!If you would like to support My’Rese by purchasing her book on Amazon, you can do so here.