West L.A. College freshman sprinter Arnell Golden is putting in the work to become an Olympian. This season, he wants to work on his aggression on the track.
“I know at the college level, it’s very different from high school. Everybody wants to be top-class athletes and everyone wants to make it,” Golden said. “I’m trying to teach myself to want it a little bit more than other people.”
Golden started his athletic journey as a senior on the Locke Saints football team. Although he was not getting the playing time he wanted, Golden realized that he was a fast runner.
Later that year, he was on the track and field team, competing in sprints, relays, and hurdling events. Golden would reach the top three spots during his events and pace his competition in the hurdling events and the 100m.
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Golden attributes his belief in God to his confidence in his talents and skills.
“I started believing in God, I started believing in myself,” he said. “And I was like ‘I can take it to the next level, I can do it.’”
His coach Andrew Gonzalez worked with him in both track and field and football. He told Golden to never stop believing in himself.
“That really meant so much to me,” Golden said. “I was really close to him and telling me that, it really made a big difference.”
For Golden, being a student athlete means “taking care of business” in the classroom then on the track. To balance his obligations, he would go to Denny’s after practice to study for classes and eat pancakes. He noted how studying has taught him patience.
“I actually take the time to understand topics in my class before we take quizzes,” Golden said. “Usually after practice, I go to Denny’s, plug in my computer to the Wi-Fi, I sit there for hours, eat pancakes … just doing homework.”
Golden noted how his favorite class is communication; the class taught him how to talk and connect with others.
“The first couple of weeks, we went up to the podium and everybody got stage fright, especially me,” he said. “I just knew that it wasn’t going to be like this forever and so that day forward, I started being comfortable with speaking to people, meeting new people.”
Golden wanted to attend West L.A. after learning how their track and field program produced Olympians.
“They did very well before making it to the Olympics and some of them actually won medals,” he said. “I want to do in that direction, I want to be able to do the same thing that these people did.”
Outside of academics and athletics, Golden enjoys editing videos and desires to study film. During his middle school years, he would make skate videos for his friends.
“It’s amazing, I have to cut the videos up, put them in an orderly fashion and yet it come out tight because of how I make them,” Golden said. “I want to be able to do that with a professional camera.”