By Stephanie DeSantis
For junior Hector Gutierrez, moving to a different country was no issue when his favorite sport was involved.
Although he is currently a student at Sacred Heart University, Gutierrez was originally born and raised in Veracruz, Mexico. Here he lived on a golf course, but he did not actually begin playing the sport until he was 12 years old.
When Gutierrez turned 15 years old, he spent a year at a golf academy in South Carolina. Because it was a boarding school, this was his first taste of dorm life.
For Gutierrez, moving to a different country with new surroundings had its challenges. However, he claims that doing so was the best decision he ever made.
“The United States is such a diverse country that anyone can find a piece of home in,” said Gutierrez.
From then on, Gutierrez spent the next three years in South Carolina at the golf academy. Not only did he get to pursue his love of golf there, but he also made many lasting, influential friendships.
One of those friends was from West Hartford, which prompted Gutierrez to look at schools in the northeast.
“I hadn’t thought about seeking schools in the north because of the weather, but he told me about SHU and how good of a reputation they had in the northeast,” said Gutierrez.
During his search for a school, Gutierrez met with the men’s golf coach at Sacred Heart. After a recruiting trip to Connecticut where he met his current teammates and coaches, he was confident that Sacred Heart was the place where he wanted to spend the next four years of his life.
Aside from currently being a member of the Division I golf team, Gutierrez is also a double major in English and Global Studies.
Gutierrez has always had a passion for reading and writing. Growing up, he was able to learn English through reading and writing about topics significant to him.
In his initial months at Sacred Heart, he was positive he wanted to add a major in English.
“I took a writing course my freshmen year and I realized it was a craft I enjoyed, and so I decided to pursue it,” said Gutierrez.
Along with his English major, Gutierrez has always been interested in global affairs. Throughout his life he has had the opportunity to meet people from different nations and experience various cultures.
Gutierrez calls both the United States and Mexico home. For him, staying up to date on world news is very important.
“In both majors, having such inspiring teachers has made me glad I made the decision to pursue English and Global Studies,” said Gutierrez.
Gutierrez has learned many values over the course of his life through academics and experience, but especially from golf.
“Golf is a sport very similar to life. You learn values that help you develop a character based on integrity and honor, but also on passion and happiness,” said Gutierrez.
Gutierrez continues to improve both as a golf player and an individual as he goes through his four years at Sacred Heart.
“I like how college makes golf a team sport because it brings such a diverse group of people together. It has also brought me some of my best friends,” said Gutierrez.
Gutierrez’s experience here at Sacred Heart has been nothing but positive, and he looks forward to what the future holds.