Alisa Rodriguez Searches for Teachable Moments at KPMG Women's PGA Championship Debut
Alisa Rodriguez is ready for her own teachable moment.
The Austin native is preparing for her first LPGA start at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship this week and she knows it will be a game changer for her both professionally and personally.
Rodriguez, who was a softball player most of her childhood, switched to golf freshman year of high school. The decision shaped her life in ways she wouldn’t be aware of until now.
Beyond her excitement for herself, Alisa is most excited for the lessons and observations she can take back to her students from the championship.
“I’m excited to learn things from both the playing side and the teaching side. There’s going to be so much to learn from just watching the others play and practice. It’s going to be cool to see what they do and kind of mimic that to help myself in ways I may not have thought of before.”
Even beyond just teaching, she hopes to inspire a competitive dream in some of her students, particularly the young girls that may be looking up to her.
“My juniors see how much I practice and how much time I put into it, so it’ll be cool for them to see that I can do it and maybe think that if this is something they want to do that they can do it too,” she shared. “I teach a lot of young girls, and I especially want them to see that it isn’t just men that are playing on tour at a high level.”
“I was born and raised in Austin, I played softball for the majority of my childhood. I picked up golf freshman year of high school. They needed somebody on the team and I’d been in summer camps. So I was familiar with golf, but it wasn’t my sport,” Rodriguez shared. “Once I started playing golf and ended up being pretty good at it,I decided to start competing and I haven’t stopped since.”
After graduating high school, Alisa traveled to El Paso, where most of her family resides, to play collegiately at University of Texas at El Paso. This led her to an internship at TopGolf, where she met PGA Associate Chris Taylor, who convinced her to start working toward PGA Membership.
“[Chris Taylor], who is going to caddy for me at KPMG, gave me more information about PGA Membership and recommended that I give it a shot.” She is now an associate working her way through the proper steps to become a PGA Membership.
She now works as the lead instructor at Balcones Country Club in Austin, where she grew up playing as a member. After having competed on the Symetra Tour and getting through Q-School, Rodriguez is excited to make her LPGA debut in a major championship.
“I don’t think it’s really set in yet. I’m excited to play and see how I hold up against the best players in the world. I want to and hope that I play well. I think having a good, solid tournament would really open up so many opportunities for me both teaching and professionally.”