This is Tiffany’s 2nd season with the Charger Girls and her first year serving as a team captain. A Taiwan native, Tiffany was raised by her grandmother from the age of two until the age of seven. She then moved across the world for a long-awaited reunion and met her mother for the first time that she could remember. Tiffany admires her mother for her strong-will to provide a life of opportunities and is forever grateful for her love and for the sacrifices that she has made. Tiffany attended the University of California, Irvine where she was a member of the Spirit Squad and held the position as dance captain in her final year of undergraduate education. Education has played an integral part in her life and it was because of the dedication and instruction from her teachers that she was able to immerse herself in an unfamiliar environment where English was not her first language. The presence of those particular role models in her life has led her to pursue a career in Education with the hopes of inspiring other young women.
My first experience with dancing was through the Chinese School. I attended Chinese School on a daily bases and chose “Chinese Cultural Dance” as my elective.
ASIANCE: What inspired you to become an NFL Cheerleader?
Since moving to the States from Taiwan at the age of 7, I discovered dancing to be my passion. Being involved in dance throughout my childhood helped me meet new friends and integrate myself in a new and unfamiliar place. I have been on a cheer/dance team at every level: Grade school, High School, Collegiate, Semi-professional Basketball team (American Basketball Association) and the NBA (National Basketball Association). I wanted to continue my professional career by being a cheerleader in the NFL. I knew that being a part of the Chargers Organization would give me a way to positively affect the youth in my community. My goal in becoming a Charger Girl was so that I can inspire other young girls to believe in themselves and know that with dedication and hard work, their dreams can become a reality, as it did for me.
ASIANCE: What background do you have that contributed to your success as a professional cheerleader?
My first experience with dancing was through the Chinese School – After school program in my local community. I attended Chinese School on a daily bases and chose “Chinese Cultural Dance” as my elective. I joined the drill team and dance team at my middle school then went on to participate in the High School Pep Club as a JV Cheerleader a Varsity Songleader. I spent three years as a collegiate cheerleader for the University of California, Irvine. In my final year of undergraduate education, I helped the Athletic department in starting the UCI Dance Team and was selected to be a team captain for the inaugural season. I danced for a team in the American Basketball Association for one season before I was selected to be a member of the Los Angeles Clippers Spirit in the NBA. I am now a second year member of the San Diego Charger Girls and first year team captain.
A majority of my family still resides in Taiwan and they see my success as a Charger Girl to be very honorable.
ASIANCE: Did you get any resistance from your family as this occupation bucks traditional Asian family values?
My entire family has always been extremely supportive of me as a professional cheerleader. A majority of my family still resides in Taiwan and they see my success as a Charger Girl to be very honorable. My mother was very successful in the entertainment industry as a model and television host while she lived in Taiwan and she is very proud of the fact that I am able to fulfill my own dreams as a cheerleader for the Chargers. I believe that my family is most proud of the fact that I can juggle being an ambassador for the Chargers Organization while working as a full-time High School Teacher and as the Head Coach of the UC Irvine Spirit Squad.
ASIANCE: When did you realize you wanted to be a Chargers Cheerleader?
I have always wanted to be a Chargers Cheerleader since I turned 18 and made the age requirement to be on the team. I took a few years to gain experience in dance before I decided to actually audition. I am thrilled to be a part of the Charger Girls. This experience has taught me so much and helped me grow immensely as an individual and as a working professional.
ASIANCE: Who is your favorite current Chargers player?
Currently, my favorite Chargers player is Philip Rivers. Rivers is an astounding leader on and off the field. As a quarterback, he has made significant strides during the season which has attracted attention from the fans and the national media, who consistently recognizes Rivers as one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL. I love witnessing his leadership in action on game day and admire his ability to play under pressure. As the rest of the fans will agree, Philip Rivers for MVP!
ASIANCE: What is the first thing you notice in a man?
Confidence and demeanor. You can tell a lot about a person by the way they carry themselves and by their interaction with others.
ASIANCE: What qualities do you look for in a boyfriend?
Loyalty, sense of humor, and generosity.
ASIANCE: Did you ever have a nickname given to you by a boyfriend?
None that was clever enough to remember!
ASIANCE: Name three words that describe you.
Driven, adventurous, nurturing
ASIANCE: What is your favorite activity to do in San Diego?
I love going to the San Diego Zoo!
ASIANCE: What is your best feature?
Character feature – I have been told that I have the ability to make others feel comfortable in any setting. I think that I have a very unassuming personality and it allows others to open up to me. I am extremely loyal to my friends and teammates and I would often put their happiness before my own.
Physical feature – my freckles! People are always shocked to learn that I have freckles. I guess it makes me unique!
ASIANCE: What is the most adventurous thing you have done?
I am a very spontaneous person and will try just about anything. I haven’t done anything that would seem out of the ordinary, but I would love to bungee jump or go sky diving some day.
ASIANCE: What is the best part about being a Chargers Cheerleader?
It is difficult to choose just one best thing about being a charger cheerleader. I would say that the biggest reward is knowing that I am a positive role model for young girls. Our annual Jr. Charger Girl program allows us to work closely with girls who look up to us. We are able to give them positive reinforcement and encourage them to always work towards their goals and never give up for something that they dream of.
Cheerleading is becoming more popular in Asian countries and it is no surprise that Asian American Women are represented on numerous teams in professional sports.
ASIANCE: Do you think that Asian/Asian American Women are finally making strides on the professional cheerleading squads?
A great thing about professional cheerleading is the diversity of each particular team. Cheerleading is becoming more popular in Asian countries and it is no surprise that Asian American Women are represented on numerous teams in professional sports. Diversity is great because it contributes to the uniqueness of each team.
ASIANCE: What is the greatest accomplishment in your life thus far?
Becoming a High School teacher has been one of my greatest accomplishments in my life so far. As an immigrant to the states, I could barely recite the alphabet and I never imagined that I would work in the field of education to help teach other children. I have personally felt the powerful affect that good teachers have on students, and I am so glad to be in a position where I can influence other individuals to achieve their greatest potential.
ASIANCE: Can you tell us about a crazy fan/stalker incident?
I have been fortunate enough to have great fans that are very respectful and supportive in what I do. One of my favorite parts about being a professional cheerleader is being able to interact with our fans. The chance to talk to others at events and appearances makes my experience on the team so much more personal and enjoyable. I love being able to relate to others and even more, I really enjoy hearing some of the stories they share with me.
ASIANCE: Where do you hope your NFL Cheerleading experience will lead you to?
I feel extremely fulfilled having achieved the goal of becoming a Charger Girl. I have been given many wonderful opportunities to travel as a representative for the Chargers Organization and share my love for football and dance with others around the world. The organization also introduced me to the Make-A-Wish Foundation which has now become my favorite charity. I hope to stay involved in the charities supported by the Chargers and continue to travel in attempt to inspire others!
ASIANCE: You all look so gorgeous on the field. How do you manage to look so perfectly coiffed throughout the routines and in all types of weather?
Thanks for the complement! We have a wonderful support team that help us look our best out on the field on game day. Thanks to the stylists at Travis Parker Salon and our make-up artists from M.A.C., we try our best to look flawless on the field.
ASIANCE: Do you have any “beauty secrets” that you can share with our readers?
A few things I always carry in my purse: lip gloss, mints, and a teasing comb!
ASIANCE: What advice do you have for young girls aspiring to become NFL Cheerleaders?
What I would tell young girls is that the most important thing is to believe in yourself and believe in your abilities and talents. Never give up on your dreams. Everything happens for a reason and that a few bumps in the road will make you stronger and help you appreciate the meaning of success.
Great video of Tiffany!