Olds College Campus News Fall 2015


By Jason Pick

It has been a wonderful and productive year for Golf Course Management in Alberta, and for Olds College.   As we come to a predictable end of an exceptionally long growing season (which began in mid-March) that followed a very mild winter, many courses are finishing up their winterization programs with smiles on their faces and money in the bank.

Now that frost is settling into our soils at Olds College, we welcome November with a toast - to our 1st year certificate graduates, and the completion of our first full year of the newly improved turfgrass management diploma program.   By November each year, our first and second year students will have finished their summer’s field studies and internships, and can take a moment to reflect and recharge before classes begin on campus again in January.   

For those continuing on to the Bachelor of Applied Science degree (BASc.) in Golf Course Management, no rest for the wicked as on November 2nd they begin a suite of online courses in Project Management,  Research methods, and Directed Field Study (DFS) preparation.  

15.11.13-OC.class.of.2015Olds College Grad Class. Image courtesy Jason Pick

Our diploma in turfgrass management enrollment is booming, having exceeded our capacity for applicants into both first and second years.  We are very pleased to see this surge of growth and interest in golf course management, and a very strong response to our program improvements.

From an instructional standpoint, November also represents a time of year where instructors reflect on their performance. Annually we invite an industry advisory committee to offer their feedback regarding industry needs, and the ever changing demands of our graduates.  The advisory committee consists of industry and association representatives, and golf superintendents throughout Western Canada. These committee members collaboratively help shape our curriculum, to ensure our students are prepared to solve today's problems, and offer tomorrow’s solutions.  

Adding more relevance and expertise into our program each year, we will welcome two industry professionals into the instructional fold for 2016; AGSA president John Faber, and Cal Drouin of Brett Young.  Both experienced instructors and alumni of the Olds College’s BASc. Golf Course Management program,  our students will once again benefit by hearing from these leading experts and professionals, active in the field.   

Our Olds College 2016 GCSAA Turf Bowl Team continues their preparations for the event in San Diego next February.  Have received the 2016 study guide from the GCSAA just this week, the competition rapidly approaches and emotions are running high.  With flights and hotels generously sponsored by Marie Thorne and Syngenta, the team is digging deep in order to represent not only Olds College, but to illustrate Syngenta’s vision and commitment to students and their continuing education.

Olds College has a very active turf club, hosting many activities and events throughout the year.  This month, the turf club participates at the AGSA conference in Canmore, selling squares for the Grey Cup while participating in the education event!  If you are interested becoming a member or participating in their many activities, visit Olds College Turf Club on Facebook to learn more. 

Turf Bowl updates and job opportunities will also be available on the facebook page - be sure to check them out!  For more information about the turfgrass management Certificate, Diploma, or Degree programs at Olds College, please check out our website and video: http://www.oldscollege.ca/programs/horticulture/turfgrass/