After just one year at Kirkwood Community College in Iowa, golfing talent Charlie Hartwig has already gained some international recognition, placing 13th at the National Tournament in May 2016.

Although this is an impressive result for the NSW athlete, Charlie feels as though he could’ve performed better, attributing a ‘lapse in focus’ for a couple of missed opportunities.

Despite helping to earn the Kirkwood Eagles second place at the National Tournament, Charlie is setting his sights on improving this performance when he heads back to Iowa in August for his second and final year at Kirkwood Community College.

“I’m really keen for next year, we sort of play a lot of the same tournaments so you get to see the courses (at the National Tournament),” Charlie said.

“For my golf, I just want to hopefully win five or six events and then really compete at nationals, that would be my goal; really go deep and play well at nationals. That will really open doors for me,” the determined golfer said.

Charlie has thrived in his first year abroad, taking on new experiences, making close friends and even having the opportunity to travel with his sporting passion.

“We’ve travelled heaps! We went to Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Nashville, Missouri…We went to a fair few places which was really cool. It was really good fun,” Charlie recalled.

Charlie’s attitude towards study is similar to that of most Aussie kids…

“Study is study. I just want to stay on top of it and knock it all out!” he said.

Charlie clearly loves his golf but also acknowledges the importance of balancing both his sport and studies to earn his degree as well.

“I just want to really keep grinding away at that and then work really hard on the golf course. You have to get the balance right between studying and playing golf but once you get the hang of that and find a good balance, it’s pretty good. It’s a busy schedule but it’s always good fun!” Charlie noted.

Being at a Community College, Charlie will need to transfer after his next year there and move to a four-year college to finish his degree.

Charlie has a few ideas of where he may be heading. He is taking into account that weather could be an influencing factor for him, given that his golf training is sometimes hindered by the cold winter in Iowa.

“The weather will play a huge factor in my choice of second college. The colleges I’m looking at have good weather all year round. They’re all great schools. It’s awesome, they all make you feel wanted if you perform well, and I’ve still got another whole year. Who knows, I might play really well and get some awesome opportunities!” the excited young student-athlete said.