News and Information
Mt. Pleasant superintendent renews professional certification
D. Jeff Sweet, GCSAA certified golf course superintendent and general manager at Bucks Run Golf Club, Mt. Pleasant, Mich., has completed the renewal process for maintaining his status as a Certified Golf Course Superintendent (CGCS) with the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA). Sweet has been at Bucks Run Golf Club since 1999. A 13-year GCSAA member, he initially achieved his certification in 2004. Approximately 1,900 golf course superintendents worldwide currently hold “CGCS” status.
According to GCSAA CEO, Mark Woodward, CGCS, “Twenty-five percent of GCSAA’s Class A members have elected to earn the highest level of recognition through the professional designation “CGCS” by completion of the GCSAA Certification Program. This program requires their demonstration of a higher set of competencies in golf course management through testing and practical application. Employers can feel confident they employ a career professional who will increase their chances of having consistently superior course conditions.”
GCSAA was among the first associations to institute a professional certification program, establishing its program in 1971 to recognize outstanding and progressive superintendents. In 2005, GCSAA completed a restructuring of its certification program in order to raise the level of documented professionalism through comprehensive continuing education. The restructured program was recognized by the National Certification Commission as “one of the most extensive and comprehensive certification programs for any profession.”
To qualify for GCSAA’s new competency-based certification program, a candidate must have at least three years experience as a golf course superintendent, be employed in that capacity and meet post-secondary educational requirements and/or continuing education points. The candidate’s knowledge, skills and abilities are validated through the development of a portfolio consisting of their responses to skill statements, case-study scenarios and submission of work samples; an on-site inspection of their golf facility; and a rigorous six-hour examination covering: equipment, irrigation systems, materials and technology; golf course and grounds; human resources, rules of golf, financial and administrative systems, regulatory and programmatic systems, crisis management, project management and ethics and values.
Maintaining certified status requires renewal every five years after the initial date of certification. To fulfill certification renewal requirements, a candidate must participate in 150 hours of continuing education and professional development.
GCSAA is a leading golf organization and has as its focus golf course management. Since 1926, GCSAA has been the top professional association for the men and women who manage golf courses in the United States and worldwide. From its headquarters in Lawrence, Kan., the association provides education, information and representation to more than 21,000 members in more than 72 countries. GCSAA’s mission is to serve its members, advance their profession and enhance the enjoyment, growth and vitality of the game of golf. The association's philanthropic organization, The Environmental Institute for Golf, works to strengthen the compatibility of golf with the natural environment through research grants, support for education programs and outreach efforts. Visit GCSAA at www.gcsaa.org. For more information, contact Sweet at 989-779-0754 or firstname.lastname@example.org.