Whether it’s in the lab or on the links, biochemistry junior August Kim drives
The Florida resident returned to her home state in May to help the Purdue
women’s golf team finish 12th in the NCAA tournament. A young team that
gelled in the regular season earned a national spotlight in the postseason.
Kim’s academic side is as strong as her golf. She has excelled in classes
and has shown an early knack for lab work and research in Professor Angeline
Lyon’s lab. Kim’s DNA and protein analysis added to her professor’s research
on heart disease, while she and her teammates helped the women’s team
earn one of the highest grade point averages in Intercollegiate Athletics at
Purdue in the spring 2015 semester.
“We killed it. Like anything, you have to work at it. It’s just diligence,”
After a tough 2014 season, Kim and her team rebounded and finished
beyond expectations. The women were ranked No. 3 in the Big Ten and finished
in that position in the 2015 tournament in Indianapolis.
At the NCAA regionals at University of Notre Dame, the team defied
expectations again and dominated against 17 opposing schools vying for a
slot in the national tournament. Kim finished in the top 10 for individual play.
“It’s high pressure, high stakes, but my team did awesome,” Kim says.
“The second day we cleared the field by 10 shots. That was huge.”
Kim enters next season as one of the team’s strongest drivers, averaging
about 250 to 260 yards per drive. Then her even stronger fair way game comes
“I’ve always liked my iron play,” Kim says. “The irons are my best friends.
I’m pretty good at putting, too. ‘Drive for show; putt for dough.’ That helps.“
Marta Martin, a sophomore studying movement and sports science, has
looked up to Kim since their first practice together. The Madrid, Spain, native
says Kim’s constant good mood is infectious and her ability to pump up her
teammates is valuable for a better performance in practice and in matches.
Kim is the only College of Science student on the team, but biology and
anatomy classes have further bonded the teammates.
“We’ve had a lot to talk about with our science courses over these years,”
Martin says. “She leads by example. I am proud of having her as a teammate
Kim first started golfing at the age of 9 thanks to her dad, Mike Kim, who
took her to area courses. The family lived in Phoenix, Arizona, a hotbed for
golf, before moving to Florida, another golf-friendly state. Kim says that besides
adjusting for stronger winds, golf in Indiana is a great play year-round.
Demands are high for Kim on the golf course in 2015-16, just as they are
for her chemistry studies. “Junior year, senior year — more will be expected
of me on the golf course and more will be expected of me in the classroom,”
she says. “It’s going to be a matter of how well I manage my time. It will be a
challenge, but fun.”
“MORE WILL BE EXPECTED OF ME ON
THE GOLF COURSE AND MORE WILL BE
EXPECTED OF ME IN THE CLASSROOM.”
— AUGUST KIM