Former Student: Masayuki Kobayashi
When Masayuki Kobayashi entered Hillyer College on a golf scholarship, he had never taken a golf lesson. Kobayashi says he likes figuring things out for himself, although he gives his brother credit for helping him with his golf swing. Kobayashi says he also learned from playing golf after school with members of the Indian Hill Country Club in Newington, Conn. While at Hillyer, Kobayashi helped the University of Hartford golf team win or place in a number of national tournaments.
A native of Japan, Kobayashi was raised in Florida, then moved to Connecticut in middle school. At the age of 14, he was the youngest person in the field at the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship. In the eighth grade, he won the Division One State High School Connecticut Golf Tournament, and in high school, he qualified for the Junior PGA Tour Championship three times. He was also one of the top 32 players, out of a total of 3,500, in the U.S. Junior Amateur Golf Championship.
Kobayashi, who graduated in 2008, hopes to become a professional golfer some day. The four professional golfers he particularly admires? It’s no surprise that Tiger Woods is one of them. The others on his list are three PGA players – Jerry Kelly, Tim Petrovich, and Pat Sheehan – who are former members of the University of Hartford golf team.
When asked what he likes most about the game of golf, Kobayashi doesn’t hesitate: "You never have the same shot. There’s constant thought process and creativity. I guess it’s almost like art. When someone paints a picture, they have an idea in their mind of what they want to do. I think of a golf shot the same way, and when it’s a good shot, the feeling is indescribable."