Visiting the Interns: Trip #1

June 29, 2010 in 2-year

As many of you are aware, a major component of the Golf Course Turfgrass Management Program (the 2-Year Program) is the six months of on-the-job training that the students complete between their first and second year. As part of the internship, I travel to each course to conduct a mid-season evaluation to assess the progress of the internship and to offer suggestions to enhance the remainder of the experience. Check out the updates from my first of five trips below.

Tim Kelly @ Muirfield Village (Visit #1)

The first visit was to Muirfield Village to visit Tim Kelly where he was helping to prepare the course for the 2010 Memorial Tournament. Tim had spent the past several weeks “in the bunkers”. In contrast to what you may think, however, this was not a matter of punishment or remedial labor given to many interns. Instead, Tim had been in charge of a crew designated to restore the bunkers for the championship. The process involved clearing out the sand, reshaping the base, smoothing the ProAngle sand, checking depths and compacting the bunkers with a plate tamper. Tim’s experience so far has been a good one and following the tournament, Paul B. Latshaw (Director of Agronomy, PSU Class of 1990) relayed that Tim would move on to a variety of other assignments to familiarize himself with all aspects of the maintenance programs at Muirfield Village.

Check out photos from Muirfield Village

Tony Kowalski @ Oakmont CC (Visit #2)

On the way back to Penn State, I stopped to conduct the second visit with Tony Kowalski who was mid-way through his internship at Oakmont Country Club. During the visit, I got to see first-hand what I call the “Oakmont Experience”. On the day of my visit the crew was triple cutting and double rolling greens to ensure that speeds were where they needed to be for the day. Tony drove me around the grounds and I quickly realized why Oakmont is one of my favorite cool-season courses around. During his internship under the supervision of John Zimmers, he has been involved in a variety of tasks including helping to prepare the course for the Women’s U.S. Open Championship that will be played next week. For the record, Tony predicts the winner score to be +2.

Check out photos from Oakmont CC

This is the first in a series of articles about student internships within the Golf Course Turfgrass Management Program (2-Year Program).