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Help me, help you

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have had aspirations to become a superintendent in the last year or two, and would like to hear some opinions on if I'm approaching it correctly. Right now I'm on the tee box with no clubs, and by that I mean I have no golf industry experience on my résumé. (I'm 20 y.o. so I still have time) I plan to send an inquiry letter, email, or both to all local golf courses explaining my interest. Consulting a local super also seems to be a valuable asset. I know they work long hours and I'm not sure the best way to approach that. As of now, the progression of acquiring a sound resume is as follows:
•Get my foot in the door on golf industry (course maintenance if I can) as early as possible
•Become a student member of GCSAA and network as much as I can
•Attend this institution for a 5-semester vocational degree in golf course and landscape management
http://www.waco.tstc.edu/programs/waco/delete-glm/aas
•While at school, get as many internships as can fit, in as many locations servicing different grasses and course architectures (for liberal experience)
•Possibly after some schooling I may have enough experience to apply for a ground maintenance crew position
•Graduate with an associates in the program and begin applying for assistant super jobs
•Get many relevant certifications (Texas pesticide license, Texas irrigator license) and get GCSAA certified
•Work on up to full super!
•Lifelong learning of new trade practices

Also, is it possible to get too many certifications? Is it not worth it? There are multiple turfgrass associations that have certification programs, or should the GCSAA program just be a one and done type of deal?

Who should I speak with on the course staff when inquiring about jobs?

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 8

I've seen several young guys move up pretty fast in that field.

 

Golf courses (around here) tend to piss through the entry level help so it would not be a bad idea to get a grounds crew job and learn everything you can - work hard and someone there may help you with your career.

 

I've seen guys under 25 go from asst super to super of a 9 hole course to super at a real course.

 

I see other supers moving on to running the grounds crew of regional hotel chains and non golf resorts.

 

It is a lot more realistic than 100% of the knuckleheads that come on here thinking that they will be on the PGA Tour.

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by meenman View Post

I've seen several young guys move up pretty fast in that field.

Golf courses (around here) tend to piss through the entry level help so it would not be a bad idea to get a grounds crew job and learn everything you can - work hard and someone there may help you with your career.

I've seen guys under 25 go from asst super to super of a 9 hole course to super at a real course.

I see other supers moving on to running the grounds crew of regional hotel chains and non golf resorts.

It is a lot more realistic than 100% of the knuckleheads that come on here thinking that they will be on the PGA Tour.

Thanks for the reassurance meenman. I'm going over to a friends house for football tomorrow and I'll definitely send some emails to local courses. Speaking of realistic, the PGA tour is my fallback option in case superintendent doesn't work out. a3_biggrin.gif
post #4 of 8

Looks to me like you have a very well thought out path actually, I'd go with that and see what happens.

post #5 of 8

I am a Superintendent. My first piece of advise is get a job on a golf course grounds crew to see if you really like that life. Not everybody is cut out for working 6 days a week lol. if you like it apply to college and get you a.s of better yet a b.s.. Most if not all programs will require a internship. If you do choose this profession I wish you the best of luck!! Do me one favor don't think that when you get your degree you are going to be a supt. right away making 100,000 a year. I have talked to many a young turf grass student who has thought this and the end up very disappointed when it doesn't happen. Find a good supt to work under soak up his knowledge and take your time. and Meeman a 9 hole course is a real course. many times you learn more at a 9 holer that a 18 hole course.

post #6 of 8
I went back to college in my 30's,and got an AS in Turf Mangement from NC State. I graduated with a 4.0,and went on to be an assistant super under a good super. I learned much more on the job than I did at school. I'm not saying that you don't need the education, but the experience of working with a crew and,actually growing grass, is an education itself.
post #7 of 8
One other thing you should look into is the number of jobs available. When I got out of school in 1991 there were a lot of courses being built, now there are more courses closing than being built. I would think that would lead to a greater number of qualified people with a fewer ammount of available jobs. Also, it could lead to lower salaries for those jobs. I don't want to discourage you from following your dream, but those are practical things you need to consider.Also, if you are doing this so you can play more, you will find that most supers don't play as often as you might think.
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. I'll be inquiring about maintenance jobs as soon as the tour championship is over. I'm not doing this to play more, caniac6, hopefully once or twice a week isn't far-fetched. It attracts me because my other college options were biology or chemistry. Being more practical, less lab intensive, and combining chemistry, biology, and golf, it's a perfect fit. I do remember reading somewhere that jobs were expected to increase through 2021 or so.
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