Among the 40 responses received for a survey sent to turfgrass schools throughout the United States, 70% of them had lower attendance than they did 10 years ago.
GCM, the magazine which conducted the inquiry, also spoke with several universities to figure out why the numbers were declining. The economy, tougher entrance exams and changes in hiring practices were three culprits (many courses cannot hire teens younger than 18), alongside the lower pay that many assistant jobs on golf courses offer.
Nick Christians, Ph.D., horticulture professor at Iowa State, had these numbers to offer, “We peaked at about 143 [students] in the early 2000s. We are down to 40 or so. That’s a huge drop.” With the recent financial troubles many golf courses are facing throughout the country, it is disappointing indeed to hear about dropping numbers in a field that is vital to the sport. Check out the in-depth article from GCM below.
Thumbnail image via worldcampus.psu.edu