Athlete profile: Pam Calderon

Costa Rica native Pam Calderon started out as a swimmer on the national team but fell in love with golf when she started playing after swim practice. The MSU senior golfer said she would run over to the pro shop and play once practice was over. She liked golf because she enjoyed being in nature and walking around, rather than “sports like basketball and volleyball where you play in an enclosed space.”

Calderon came to MSU to major in architecture after being offered a golf scholarship. She is currently working toward her master’s degree in architecture, after finishing her undergraduate degree in three and a half years. Calderon hopes to graduate this spring.

Balancing being a student athlete may be challenging, but Calderon has learned to not procrastinate. “I try to balance school and golf. I’m kind of a hermit because I always do architecture,” she said. “Balancing everything is hard while traveling, but accomplishing it during school and golf feels really good. I know I have to stay on top of everything because I’ll get behind and it is hard to catch up.”

Calderon, the first international student to play on the golf team, said that since she came to MSU, “my mental game has changed a lot. I’ve matured a lot, also.” She says playing golf is much more enjoyable than watching. “It’s your game, not anyone else’s. Seeing someone accomplish a goal versus accomplishing your own goal is different.”

Her favorite part of MSU is the school spirit — “It’s displayed all over the town, and it is a small town, but there’s spirit everywhere. I had never been to a football game until freshman year and it was amazing how much school spirit there was.”

Calderon said she used to see golf in her future, but not anymore. “Before, I thought it could be a possibility,” she said, “You really have to want it. It has to be the only thing you want, but I know it’s not the only thing I want. I want to do something that will change people’s lives.”