From the Field: Jeff Jensen, GCSAA Field Staff, Southwest Region 

From the Field:
Jeff Jensen, GCSAA Field Staff, Southwest Region
2018 had its share of challenges for the golf industry nationwide, but I’m glad to say that because of all your support, GCSAA will be 18,000 members strong heading into the 2019 calendar year. Much of that growth has been fueled by the expansion and addition of programs and resources for our members.
The Turf Equipment Technician Certificate Program (TETCP) added Level 2 (launching in December) and our team is in the process of working on a certification program for equipment managers. Passing Level 1 and Level 2 exams will be a prerequisite for going through the certification program.
Additionally, we launched our Assistant Superintendent Certificate Program. Principles of Agronomy and Principles of Golf Course Business exams are now available with Leadership/Communication and Environmental Management being developed. To date, 80 members have passed Principles of Agronomy with another 49 having passed Principles of Golf Course Business.
In June, we took over operation of The First Green Program. First Green is a STEM education and environmental outreach program that uses golf courses as learning labs. I encourage you to consider hosting a field trip at your facility as it’s a great opportunity to promote your facility and the game.   GCSAA is expanding the program and will also use it to educate high school age students on careers in turf.
In August, GCSAA partnered with Hays Cos., a leading national insurance and financial services organization, to provide a variety of product and service offerings exclusively to GCSAA members. The programs include health, dental and vision coverage, accident and life insurance as well as financial services.
As we head into 2019 we have many other programs and projects in store for our membership with a focus on chapter and member outreach. We realize as the golf maintenance industry evolves, we need to stay a step ahead and provide our members with tools, education and resources to get the job done.
Happy Holidays to you and your families and best of luck in the New Year. 2019 will be sure to present us with many opportunities and challenges alike.
I look forward to seeing you at some of the upcoming meetings and If you have any questions, please contact me at [email protected] and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @GCSAA_SW for daily industry updates.

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