This week's edition of Meet the Terps catches up with rising junior Emily Gimpel. Gimpel joined the Terps in the fall after spending her freshman year at William and Mary. Gimpel has been featured in several publications for her work with Junior Golf Clubs Cancer, which can be found on Facebook.
Q: You began your collegiate career at William & Mary. Why did you decide to transfer and what attracted you to the University of Maryland?
I was looking for a fit that included an excellent academic program in Kinesiology balanced with a highly competitive golf program -- one with a comprehensive program that included excellent facilities on campus, an intense practice and workout schedule, and first rate coaching and support.
The University of Maryland Golf Course and short-game practice area right on campus was a big plus, and the ACC is one of the very best and most competitive conferences for women's golf.
Q: You have been featured for starting the Junior Golf Clubs Cancer organization. What drove you to start the organization?
When my junior golf teammates and I at Whitemarsh Valley Country Club learned of two kids we knew that were diagnosed with forms of cancer, we wanted to try to help. I was 13 years old at the time, but my Dad talked with us and told us that even the smallest contributions that we could make together could make a big difference to help find a cure and also support families who are caring for children with cancer.
Since then, we have now raised over $115,000 for pediatric cancer research at St. Christopher's Hospital for Children in Philadelphia and in direct support of these families in need. Additionally, we have given back to the game and junior golf by collecting and donating over 2,200 used golf clubs to the First Tee Program of Montgomery County (PA). Perhaps most importantly, we all have joined to raise awareness, spirits, and hope for these kids and families that need it so much.
Q: What is your proudest or top athletic achievement to this point in your life?
Winning the Pennsylvania State Junior Girls Championship in 2010.
Q: What has been your favorite experience on the course and off the course at the University of Maryland?
My favorite experience on the course at the University of Maryland has been spending time and bonding with my fellow Terps! We have a great group of girls on the team. We all motivate each other to work hard to improve. My passion is playing golf, so having teammates to share this with has made my time at Maryland very meaningful and fun.
Off the course, I have really enjoyed attending other Terrapin sporting events with my teammates. Maryland has very successful athletic teams across the board, and being able to cheer on our friends on the soccer field or basketball court has been very exciting!
Q: Your scores improved from the fall to the spring this year. To what do you credit the improvement?
After playing well all summer, I had a rough first month transitioning due to an illness and then a few mechanical issues with my swing. So my fall scores were much higher than I expected. The fall is tough because the season is so short and starts immediately with the start of classes.
I credit my improved performance this spring to hard work and improved confidence. My coaches and my teammates were extremely supportive. I practiced extremely hard after the fall season, had some really solid scores in the Jones Doherty Championship in Florida in January, and returned ready to play and in good form for the spring season.
Q: Of the courses you have played, which is your favorite and why?
Sedgefield Country Club -- the location of the ACC Championships -- was my favorite course we played this season. I found it to be extremely challenging with firm, fast, and undulated greens. Overall the course is a great test of the game.
Q: What is/are your superstition(s)?
I text my parents every morning before a competitive round.
Q: What song on your iPod are you embarrassed to admit that you listen to?
Justin Bieber - "Boyfriend"
Q: If you did not play golf, what other sport would you play?
I was a swimmer from age 4 until college. So if I wasn't on the course, you would probably find me in the pool!
Q: What are your career aspirations after graduation?
I definitely want to include golf in my life, and am trying to improve to be able to compete professionally, and/or perhaps include coaching and teaching the game in my career.
Q: What are your personal and team goals for next year?
We can definitely make a run at the ACC Championship next season and return to the NCAA Regionals. I also know we can get through to the NCAA Championship Finals in 2013. My teammates are very consistent and can all go low, and we expect our new teammates to also make an immediate impact.
Q: Which area of your game are you trying to improve for next year?
This summer, I have focused practice on my wedges, 100 yards and in, chipping and lag putting. Sharpening these areas of my game will hopefully lower my scores and help me to be more consistent.