PGA Golf Management Program
- Certified golf handicap of 12 or better (e.g., USGA handicap card) or written verification of playing ability (click for form) equivalent to a 12 or better handicap by a PGA professional or high school golf coach.
- Acceptance to UNL and acceptance by written confirmation from the PGA Golf Management Director into the PGA Golf Management program.
- Maintain a 2.5 cumulative GPA.
- Participate in the PGA Golf Management Student Club.
- Participate in a minimum of four PGA Golf Management tournaments each semester. Read the UNL PGM Tournament Guidelines document (MS Word file) for more information.
- Take the PGA Playing Ability Test once in first year and two-three times each year after that until passed.
- Pay all PGA Golf Management fees by stated deadlines.
- Stay on cohort schedule with respect to the PGA Golf Management program.
- Complete 120 credit hours (beginning with 2012-13 school year), including all course work required for the PGA Golf Management major.
- Complete 16 months of full-time internships in three different types of settings.
- Pass Playing Ability Test of the Nebraska Section of the PGA.
- Pass Level 3 of the PGA curriculum.
- All UNL and PGA Golf Management fees paid in full.
The PGA Golf Management curriculum consists of classroom studies, internships, and player development activities.
There are two distinct pathways that can be followed depending on your own career goals. Both pathways run parallel to each other. One includes a minor in Business and the other in Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management (HRTM).
Your academic advisor, who will be a faculty member within the program will help you to determine the best pathway for your unique goals.
If you can't decide, it is even possible to combine the minors and get both within the 120 credit hours!
Golf Operations Management Option
The Golf Operations Management option includes a Minor in Business Administration. This was our original built-in Minor and is intended to be general in nature and it provides a broad set of skills that are extremely useful in any business setting.
The Business Administration Minor includes 6 courses (18 credits). The minor is a specific set of 6 courses in Accounting, Economics, Marketing, Management, Finance, and Business Law.
Club Management Option
The Club Management Option includes a minor in Hospitality, Restaurant, and Tourism Management (HRTM). This minor was built based on feedback from the industry seeking individuals who were specifically equipped with the knowledge and expertise that is necessary within the hospitality-focused industries. This minor is focused on those individuals who wish to pursue careers as general managers at clubs, overseeing not just golf but every department within the facility.
The HRTM Minor is comprised of a selection of 6 courses (18 credits) from a larger collection of possible classes.
There is a significant amount of overlap between the two options. The Golf Operations Management option requires 9 credits of HRTM classes and the General Management Option requires Economics, and also has a significant focus on the business aspects of the golf and hospitality industries. The PGA Golf Management Core focues on both areas heavily.
So, one cannot really go wrong. We work with students as they come into the program to establish some initial goals and decide which minor is right for them. In some cases, students elect to complete both options. With careful planning and advising, this can be done within the 120 total credit hours for the degree program!
A robust internship program sits at the heart of the program. 16 months of full-time internship work in the golf industry are required prior to graduation. That makes the PGA Golf Management Program one of the most "hands-on" programs at the university!
Internships are typically divided into 3 experiences. One 3 month experience following your first year on campus, a 6-7 month experience following your second year and another 6-7 months after year 3 and prior to graduation. The sequencing of these experience is designed to be as flexible as possible to allow you to take advantage of all of the awesome opportunities that the industry has to offer.
The program supports students during every phase of the internship experience, from getting your first résumé and cover letter prepared, to finding the right experience for you. We maintain a database with over a thousand facilities that we work with! We also conduct in-person site visits to ensure that your experience is as great as it can be.
Every step of the process is documented thoroughly so that we can do our best in making your experience valuable and unforgettable.
- Internship Agreement
- Internship Site Visit Evaluation
- Supervisor Evaluation of Student
- Student Evaluation of Facility
- Post-Internship Debrief
Students are encouraged to branch out and try a variety of facilities in a variety of locations (nationally and globally) One of the most common questions we get is related to finding housing at these sites. Many host facilities arrange for housing as part of their offering to attract students to intern at their facilities. If it is not offered by the facility, the facility will typically have a relationship with an apartement complex to help arrange housing.
This is an absolutely fantastic opportunity for students to explore the industry while gaining the valuable skills needed to be successful in their careers.
Explore this map to see a sample of where some of our interns landed in 2019! (note: not all interns are represented, only those that chose to openly share where they were going)
One of the great features of this program is that it allows students to become fully eligible for Class 'A' PGA Membership upon graduation.
Three areas within this process include:
- Participating in a Player Development Program
- Passing a Playing Ability Test (PAT)
- Completion of all required PGA coursework
Player Development Program
The player development program at the University of Nebraska is one that sets us apart from the rest. Students are afforded the opportunity to participate in as many as 15-20 tournaments per semester. These tournaments are held at a variety of courses in Lincoln and surrounding areas. There are opportunities to play in regional and national tournaments as well.
Students will be able to take lessons/receive club fitting sessions with top PGA Teaching Professionals. These lessons and club fittings will not only help students with their own games, but give them an inside view of how some of the best instructors of the game do what they do.
- Mike Schuchart, Wilderness Ridge Golf
- Chris Thompson, Wilderness Ridge Golf
- Alex Carper, Wilderness Ridge Golf
- Jim White, Fairways at Lincoln
- Greg Johannesen, Fairways at Lincoln
These lessons and club fittings will not only help students with their own games, but give them an inside view of how some of the best instructors of the game do what they do.
Playing Ability Test (PAT)
The player development program is targeted at helping students improve their games and learn a little about the golf business at the same time. A more short-term goal of this program is to help students to pass the Playing Ability Test. This PGA administered test consists of playing in a one-day, 36-hole golf tournament. The purpose of this is to verify that a prospective member of the PGA of America can play a credible game of golf.
There are essentially 4 Levels of coursework to be completed in the PGA side of this major. Beyond the Qualifying Level, each level contains 3 industry aspects: The people, game, and business of golf. These 4 Levels comprise the core of the material taught by the PGA Golf Management Staff in the PGAM Classes.
This Level serves as an introduction to the program and also covers The History, Constitution of the PGA and the Rules of Golf. The first half of the first semester on campus is spent covering this material.
Level 1 takes the student through Fall Semester of their Sophomore Year.
- Business Planning
- Tournament Operations
- Customer Relations
- Golf Car Fleet Management
- Introduction to Teaching & Golf Club Performance
Level 2 takes the student through Fall Semester of Junior Year
- Golf Operations
- Turfgrass Management
- Customer Relations
- Merchandising & Inventory Management
- Intermediate Teaching & Golf Club Alterations
Students will typically finish Level 3 in the Spring of their Senior Year.
- Human Resources/Supervising & Delegating
- Food & Beverage Control
- Career Enhancement
- Player Development Programs/Teaching as a Business
- Advanced Teaching & Golf Club Fitting
- Final Experience