John Deere supports budding superintendents

By and |  July 11, 2013

A new program sponsored by John Deere will make it possible for teenagers to experience a career in golf course management and learn about the science of agronomy.

Careers on Course is part of the company’s $1 million five-year commitment to The First Tee, a nonprofit organization that offers young people educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through golf.

“The First Tee is an outstanding and proven program for youth development,” said James M. Field, president of John Deere’s Worldwide Agriculture and Turf Division. “The Careers on Course program builds on the leadership development activities already taking place in The First Tee while providing participants with the opportunity to better understand the business of golf course maintenance.”

Participants in the Careers on Course program learn from professionals who work at the PGA Tour golf courses that have partnered with The First Tee. The curriculum was developed in conjunction with the PGA Tour and teaches students the work required to present a well-manicured, environmentally safe and playable course and introduces them to club operations.

This year, the Careers on Course program includes TPC Sugarloaf near Atlanta in July and Chicago’s Cog Hill Golf & Country Club in August. Chapters of The First Tee in those markets will participate at each event.

Two participants from each chapter involved in the initial events will have the opportunity to shadow a superintendent as he or she prepares their golf course for an official PGA Tour event, including the Deutsche Bank Championship in August, the BMW Championship in September and the Tour Championship by Coca-Cola in September.

In 2014, select participants will be invited to the Deere & Co. world headquarters in Moline, Ill., and TPC Deere Run in nearby Silvis, Ill., to learn about business operations and other career opportunities.

“There are many important outcomes for young people involved in The First Tee. Participants have more confidence in academic work and social settings,” said The First Tee CEO Joe Louis Barrow Jr. “We believe Careers on Course will help keep young people engaged and inspire interest in the scientific, technological, and business aspects of a golf course management career.”

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