How loving a challenge can change your life

By America Lopez-Santiago
March 19, 2020


Hobbies and sport don’t come easy to everyone. Most people have to practice day and night to get where they are for their team. 

Gerald Haftmann is a sophomore studying business management with a minor in sports management. In 2019, Haftmann was named Atlantic East Conference Rookie of the YearHaftmann is part of the golf team and has been playing ever since 8th grade when his dad took him to a golf course. Haftmann couldn’t hit the ball for his life and was terrible at golfing when he started out. Even though when he started out, he wasn’t that great, Haftmann never gave up and liked the challenge. He loves how each golf course is challenging and how golf kicks his butt and pushes him to challenge himself. 

Gerald Haftmann swinging. Photo provided by Cabrini University Athletics.

Haftmann learned about Cabrini through his high school and decided he wanted to get in contact with the golf coach, Tana Thomas. Haftmann and Thomas talked back and forth before Haftmann chose to commit to the school. 

“It was a little bit of golf and a little bit because it was close to home,” Haftmann said. “I didn’t want to go too far, so I wanted to pick somewhere that was a good distance from home and school.” 

For Haftmann, his life is eat, sleep, golf; his whole life revolved around golf. Haftmann doesn’t struggle with managing golf with his school life because he has every part of his life scheduled hour by hour. So every day at 8 a.m Haftmann goes to class; next, he goes to the gym, after that he putt-putts for 40 minutes, then he gets lunch and later goes back to the gym. Though even though his whole life revolves around golf, he still makes time to hang out with his friends at night since he has nothing scheduled for the night. 

“Gerald is a really stand up dude,” Ryan Markowitz, junior graphic design major, said. “Really respectable and pretty wise when I talk to him. I can also relate to him a lot, and he’s someone who has good standards that I think a lot of people should live by in life.”

Golf is more than it meets the eye. For Haftmann, he uses a system called DECADE, which tells you how you should aim based on math. DECADE has taught Haftmann how to use Google Maps and the bird’s eye view of the course to measure out the course. This helps Haftmann figure out how he should swing when he is competing, which usually takes 30 to 40 minutes to figure out. 

Left to right: Sean Caspar, Daniel Murphy, Gerald Haftmann, Jonathan Papp and Liam Caspar win at Ursinus Fall Invitational. Photo provided by Cabrini University Athletics.

Haftmann would like to go pro but knows there are a lot of young people coming up, which makes it a tough league to enter. Even though Haftmann’s life revolves around golf, he doesn’t try to take it too seriously. He golfs more because he loves the sport and how it challenges him. During the summer, Haftmann does a bunch of events and travels all over because he loves the game and wants to have fun while golfing. 

“Golf is a really stressful game,” Haftmann said. “Why get mad at the bad shots and happy at the good shots? I see a lot of people get mad, and I try to keep my head above the horizon.”

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America Lopez-Santiago

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