Humans of Harker: On par with life

Katelyn Vo (12) sticks to her values both on and off the course

%E2%80%9CWhen+I+was+younger%2C+whenever+I+wasn%E2%80%99t+playing+well%2C+I%E2%80%99d+let+myself+break+down+on+the+course%2C+but+I+had+to+learn+that+it%E2%80%99s+okay.+One+bad+hole+isn%E2%80%99t+going+to+ruin+the+entire+round.+I+feel+like+that%E2%80%99s+really+representative+of+real+life+too.+One+bad+day+isn%E2%80%99t+going+to+ruin+the+rest+of+my+life.+%5BWith+golf%5D%2C+I%E2%80%99ve+really+had+to+learn+how+to+bounce+back+from+any+obstacles+that+come+in+my+way%2C%E2%80%9D+Katelyn+Vo+%2812%29+said.
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Humans of Harker: On par with life

“When I was younger, whenever I wasn’t playing well, I’d let myself break down on the course, but I had to learn that it’s okay. One bad hole isn’t going to ruin the entire round. I feel like that’s really representative of real life too. One bad day isn’t going to ruin the rest of my life. [With golf], I’ve really had to learn how to bounce back from any obstacles that come in my way,” Katelyn Vo (12) said.

“When I was younger, whenever I wasn’t playing well, I’d let myself break down on the course, but I had to learn that it’s okay. One bad hole isn’t going to ruin the entire round. I feel like that’s really representative of real life too. One bad day isn’t going to ruin the rest of my life. [With golf], I’ve really had to learn how to bounce back from any obstacles that come in my way,” Katelyn Vo (12) said.

Anna Vazhaeparambil

“When I was younger, whenever I wasn’t playing well, I’d let myself break down on the course, but I had to learn that it’s okay. One bad hole isn’t going to ruin the entire round. I feel like that’s really representative of real life too. One bad day isn’t going to ruin the rest of my life. [With golf], I’ve really had to learn how to bounce back from any obstacles that come in my way,” Katelyn Vo (12) said.

Anna Vazhaeparambil

Anna Vazhaeparambil

“When I was younger, whenever I wasn’t playing well, I’d let myself break down on the course, but I had to learn that it’s okay. One bad hole isn’t going to ruin the entire round. I feel like that’s really representative of real life too. One bad day isn’t going to ruin the rest of my life. [With golf], I’ve really had to learn how to bounce back from any obstacles that come in my way,” Katelyn Vo (12) said.

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Amazing golfer. Warm and charismatic teammate. Resilient and focused athlete. When asked about Katelyn, these are common responses. While Katelyn’s skills on the golf course are undeniable, it’s the application of what she’s learned from the game in the world around her that makes her unique.

Taking on golf at an early age, Katelyn has always devoted herself to the sport, practicing long hours to perfect her game. As she improved, golf became a larger part of her life, leading her to join the Harker golf team and ultimately serve as its captain in her junior and senior years. 

The Harker golf program has been fortunate enough to have its fair share of success stories and Katelyn has been one of the most influential and impactful golfers in the history of the program, inclusive of boys and girls. Having known her since sixth grade, I cannot imagine Harker golf without Katelyn,” said Ie Chen, the Varsity Girls’ Golf coach.

Katelyn’s skill in leading the golf team lies within her values, which she brings to every game as she guides and supports the other players. Among these are her dedication, teamwork, and compassion. 

“To me, the trademark of a great teammate and leader is making everyone else around her better, and she has done that masterfully,” said Chen.

Additionally, at her advanced level, Katelyn’s life is often consumed with travel and competitions. In her fast-paced world, she’s adopted lessons from the world around her. 

When I was younger, whenever I wasn’t playing well, I’d let myself break down on the course, but I had to learn that it’s okay. One bad hole isn’t going to ruin the entire round. I feel like that’s really representative of real life too. One bad day isn’t going to ruin the rest of my life. [With golf], I’ve really had to learn how to bounce back from any obstacles that come in my way,” Katelyn said. 

Katelyn’s strengths lie far beyond her athletic ability. She actively checks in with herself and those around her, carrying her empathy with her wherever she goes. She believes this is something that more people should incorporate into their daily lives. 

“Everyone’s always trying to get that extra edge, but once in a while taking that extra step back and realizing that high school only happens once is important too. We all need balance in our lives,” Katelyn said. 

Allison Yen (12), one of Katelyn’s closest friends, values the commitment and effort she puts into her relationships. 

“She’s a super good listener. Whenever you have an issue she’ll always be there to just sit there and hear you out. If I’m ever upset, she’ll basically drop everything for me and be there to help out,” Allison said. 

Katelyn sees great value in her friendships as well, and in striving towards balance in her life, actively seeks out people with whom she meshes well with.

“Find a group of people that you really click with, not just people that you’re surrounded by every day because that makes a big difference on your experience in high school. My friends have shaped me into the person I am, and having those people to back me up has allowed me to break out of the confined person that I was,” Katelyn said.

Watching her grow over the past four years, another one of Katelyn’s close friends, Katelyn “Kaidi” Dai (12) admires her charisma.

“She’s easily one of the most contagious people I know — like in terms of her positivity and energy and laughter. She can always brighten up any room she steps into and I know how genuinely happy I get just seeing her round the corner or show up because she’s like a ray of sunshine. And I’m sure everyone who knows her feels the same way. It’s just the Katelyn Vo effect,” said Kaidi.