Taylor Likes Her New Home At NC State
Feb. 4, 2013
RALEIGH, N.C. - It's not unusual for prospective college students to surf the internet to research potential college choices before taking a visit to the school.
NC State women's golfer Racheal Taylor was no different. Well, slightly different. When Taylor, who joined the women's golf team in January, was looking at potential schools to attend and pursue her collegiate golf career, she was doing so from Germany.
So how did she settle on NC State? It was, in part, Taylor doing her due diligence, along with a chance meeting with Wolfpack assistant coach Todd Selders in Ireland two years earlier.
"I've always wanted to come to America to play college golf," said Taylor. "So I went online and looked at all of the universities in North and South Carolina. I emailed a few coaches to let them know I was interested. Coach Selders read my email and remembered me."
Selders then shared Taylor's e-mail with Wolfpack head coach Page Marsh, who liked what she was reading.
"I was impressed by her e-mail and her passion for the game," said Marsh. "Her desire and dream of playing college golf also were impressive to me. "
Another factor that worked in NC State's favor--Taylor's mother's best friend lives in Charlotte.
The best friends met through their husbands, both golf pros, who worked at the Golf Resort Bad Griesbach in southeast Germany.
Taylor was born in Scotland, but her family immigrated to Germany when she was an infant after her father accepted a position at Bad Griesbach.
Having her mother's friend just a couple hours from the State campus has helped Taylor in making the adjustment to being so far away from home for the first time. The internet also has helped her stay in contact with her family back in Germany, to stave off homesickness.
"I'm able to Skype, Facetime and instant message with my mom," said Taylor. "So I'm okay now."
One of the biggest adaptations that Taylor has had to make in her move to North Carolina is getting accustomed to American cuisine and our portions.
"The portions are bigger," commented Taylor with a chuckle. "They look small, but they're large."
Even nuances like ice in drinks, free refills and popcorn with butter are a few of the things that Taylor is becoming accustomed to in her new home, which she says she's liking it so far.
Taylor also is enjoying getting to know her new school and classmates. She says the key to making her classes fun is meeting her fellow students and getting assigned to group projects. Taylor has settled on sports management as her major.
While Taylor and her fellow Wolfpack teammates have yet to take to the course for the start of their spring season, she says the squad has made her feel right at home.
"I've hung out with them a few nights," said Taylor, "I feel like I'm part of the team already."
Taylor also has been awed by the Wolfpack nation's passion for college athletics. She watched in amazement as her fellow students stormed the court following the men's basketball team's victory over then top-ranked Duke.
"You don't get all of that happiness and energy in one room in Germany," said Taylor. "Everyone was letting go, and that's just not something I saw back home."
She says she's also looking forward to next fall and attending her first NC State football game with her teammates.
Another factor that impressed Marsh was Taylor's extensive golf resume. Taylor began playing the game as an eight-year-old and participated in her first tournament at 11. She has twice represented her native Scotland in the Home International Matches (2009-10), while also competing in the 2010 European Girls Championships in Denmark and the British Girls Championship.
Since 2009, she has won 26 tournament titles, including 13 in 2010. In 2011, Taylor returned to the country of her birth and won the Lanarkshire Ladies County Championship.
Taylor hopes to make a similar impact as a member of the Wolfpack when she begins her collegiate playing career this spring for NC State.
If she's able to duplicate the success that she had on the European junior circuit, Wolfpack golf fans will be happy Taylor's internet surfing led her to NC State.