Shani Waite, 12th grade, Mira Costa HS

Favorite golfer: Lexi Thompson is because I love the way she carries herself on and off the golf course. She shows confidence throughout everything she does, and she is the sweetest person ever!

Favorite course: Oak Valley GC in Beaumont. The layout of the course is absolutely beautiful and it’s a great place to really challenge your game.

Favorite animal: Tiger because they are fearless and strong!

Favorite food: Belizean food because I am half Belizean. I absolutely love my ethnicity and my family!

Favorite way to relax: Drawing or painting. I got into art at a young age, I always love trying something new and letting my creativity run wild.

Dream foursome: Myself along with Mariah Stackhouse, Tiger Woods and Harold Varner

When did you start playing golf? How did you get involved?

I started playing the game of golf when I was six. My mom was pregnant at the time with my sister and she wanted me to get out the house and participate in some events. She ended up getting a flyer from her friend about the First Tee. The classes started at Jessie Owens Park every Saturday and she took me to the first one they had. When I got there, I immediately loved the coaches, the kids I were around, and the environment was just so positive! I continue to love this game more and more everyday.

What do you love most about golf?

I love meeting new people out on the course every day and getting the opportunity to play with mentors. You never know who you can meet out there and the surprises I get at times are the best memories I have.

Why is it important to have Girls Golf of Southeast LA?

It’s important to have Girls Golf of Southeast LA because this program teaches younger girls confidence, honesty and perseverance. It gives them an outlet to be open with their peers and to make long-lasting friendships. Girls have a hard time in school as it is, so to have this program as an outlet can help them deal with problems in golf or outside of golf as well.

What is your favorite memory from Girls Golf of Southeast LA?

My favorite memory from Girls Golf of Southeast LA is when we do ice breakers at the beginning of each session. The girls are always so shy at first, but when we get done their faces light up and it makes my day. I absolutely love kids and seeing them every first Friday of the month makes me happy.

What would you say to other girls about playing golf?

To other girls who would like to get into the game of golf I would tell them to take advantage of every opportunity you get! Don’t be afraid to make new friends or meet people older than you. Golf is a wonderful sport that will teach you life skills that will help you both on and off the golf course.