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Current Residence: Lake Arrowhead, Calif.
Hometown: Lake Arrowhead, Calif.
Home Course: Lake Arrowhead Country Club, Arrowhead Country Club
College: California State University San Marcos / Palomar College
Profession: Professional Golfer
Meghan Hardin is the youngest female competitor in the history of Big Break
at age 19, but don’t let her age fool you. As her fellow competitors will attest, Hardin is wise beyond her years, and has a work ethic when it comes to golf that is second to none.
She also is a risk taker.
Hardin, who recently finished her sophomore year of junior college at Palomar College in Southern California, turned professional to compete on Big Break Atlantis
, foregoing her collegiate career that included multiple scholarship offers to Division I schools.
“Coming to the decision to compete on Big Break Atlantis
wasn’t the quickest or easiest decision, but this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for me,” said Hardin. “I’ll definitely look to continue school, but with everything I have been through the past two years in college, I’m ready to take that next step in my golf career.”
Golf has been a part of Hardin’s life ever since her mother introduced her to the game at a young age. Golf was not her passion or first choice growing up, however. It was tennis.
“I played a lot of tennis and was a competitive cheerleader in high school, and in both, I gave 110%,” explained Hardin.
Golf was a sport that Hardin played for fun in the summers and during the high school golf season. At her high school in Southern California, she competed with and alongside the boys and played on the men’s high school golf team. When her tennis coach started pressuring her to give up golf and concentrate solely on tennis, she did the exact opposite.
The summer between her junior and senior year, she competed in the Southern California PGA Junior Tour, her first exposure to tournament golf outside of high school. She had been so acclimated to playing against the boys and playing from the back tees, that when she played with the girls and the forward red tees, she immediately found success, recording several runner-up finishes.
“That summer really got me excited about golf,” said Hardin. “It suddenly clicked. For the longest time I was playing for fun. I thought to myself, ‘Meghan, you can make a career out of golf.’
During her senior year, Hardin went down a similar path as fellow contestant Allison Micheletti. She emailed golf coaches throughout the state and on the West Coast. Her persistence won out, and she accepted a golf scholarship to California State University San Marcos.
Hardin was looking forward to furthering her golf career at the college level. Two years and two schools later, she is taking a different path to achieve her dream of playing on the LPGA Tour.
The summer of 2010, just prior to the start of her freshman year, Hardin received word that the golf coach who recruited her two years ago was let go. The incoming coach, in Hardin’s eyes, favored seniority over performance during her freshman year. Coupled with the fact that the University was facing probation the next two years, Hardin felt it best to withdraw from the school and start fresh.
It was a difficult decision for her, giving up her scholarship. She transferred to Palomar College, a junior college near San Diego in 2011, where she excelled on the golf course, helping her team win the California Community College Athletic Association Golf Championship (CCCAA) in November, 2011.
“It was the best feeling in the world,” she said. “Up until that point, I had never experienced anything like this.
“Until I was picked to be on Big Break Atlantis
With multiple scholarship offers in the balance, she consulted with her parents about this decision, which could shape the rest of her career. She decided the opportunity to compete on Big Break
was to good to pass up.
She turned professional immediately prior to competing on the series. She was not allowed to tell her potential coaches that she was turning down the scholarship offers and that she was on Big Break
until after she returned from shooting the series.
Meghan Hardin is a risk taker. Only time will how rewarding her risk will turn out to be.
Big Break Atlantis Competitors:
Related TV Shows:
Big Break Atlantis