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As an accomplished athlete and student, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh junior Kayla Priebe, of Appleton, has an unparalleled passion for excellence both on and off the golf course.

Priebe is described by UW Oshkosh women’s golf coach Liza Ruetten as the “ideal Division III athlete.”

“Kayla is an incredibly focused and driven student-athlete,” Ruetten said. “Her commitment to academics parallels her commitment to the game of golf.”

Dedication to the game

Priebe is a prized member of the UW Oshkosh women’s golf team, earning many significant awards and distinctions throughout her athletic career.

“Kayla was Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Player of the Year in 2016 and earned WIAC All-Conference Honors every year of her career thus far,” Ruetten said.

Priebe has also earned distinction at the regional and national level. In 2016 and 2017, she earned Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) All-American Honors and was a member of the 2016-2017 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) All-Central Regional team.

Priebe is a successful golfer in her own right, however she is also a vital motivator for the rest of her team.

“Kayla leads by quiet example. In practice and before competition she is focused on the job at hand,” Ruetten said. “Her calm, focused demeanor helps other teammates settle down to work. She has been instrumental to our incoming freshman class this year by sending them biweekly emails during the fall semester with hints for successful navigation of UW Oshkosh as a student-athlete.”

Success off the course

When it comes to life outside of golf, Priebe uses her involvement in the sport as a way to increase her productivity.

“I think participating in golf has actually helped me be much more successful in every aspect of college, including academics,” Priebe said. “Playing a sport is a huge time commitment, but being busy helps me be much more productive with my time and to put my whole focus on what I am working on.”

Even prior to beginning college Priebe has been successful in academics. She has maintained a 4.0-grade-point average since her freshman year of high school and is a National Merit Scholar.

As a graduate of Fox Valley Lutheran high school in Appleton, Priebe credits a lot of her success to what she learned from her high school teachers.

“I was taught good study habits in high school, which have been a big factor in my success in college,” Priebe said.

The skills Priebe employs to maintain such a high level of success in multiple areas are imperative, she said.

“All the strategies I have used are methods that I have found work for me,” Priebe said. “I am a morning person, so if I have a lot of homework I’ll get up a little earlier in the morning to get it done rather than stay up later. I eat three meals a day and stay on a consistent sleep schedule. I use a planner to keep all my homework, exams, and projects organized. Finding a method that works for me has been the most important thing to staying organized and staying successful in both school and golf.”

Looking fore-ward!

Priebe is an accounting major and has completed a number of internships related to her field. She is currently interning with a public accounting firm in Appleton and for the coming summer will be returning to Thrivent Financial for a second internship.

“These experiences will help me decide what exactly I am looking for in an accounting career after graduation,” Priebe said. “I hope to stay in Wisconsin for my job to remain close to family and friends.”

Despite the balance between athletics and academics being challenging, Priebe said those challenges are always worth it.

“The network of supporters I have has really helped me be successful,” she said. “Succeeding in both academics and athletics is difficult at times, but it is extremely rewarding.”

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