Despite the extraordinary success and depth of experience in the golf and turf industry in South Africa, there are few opportunities for students to have access to high-quality training on equipment as well as an environment that will encourage them to learn and grow. The journey to becoming a greenkeeper or sports turf superintendant is long, hard and challenging but African Turf Academy, John Deere and AFGRI Equipment have joined forces for aspiring golfers and golf industry candidates to gain an internationally accredited professional career.
AFGRI Equipment and African Turf Academy (ATA)
African Turf Academy (ATA) and AFGRI Equipment partnered on the 1st of February 2022 to assist aspiring golfing and turf industry professionals to reach new heights and to broaden their horizons in terms of their education. Students frequently struggle with finding ways of getting into the golf industry yet being successful in reaching their career aspirations. Andrew McKenna, the founder of African Turf Academy (ATA), set out to create a world-class training academy that is recognised both locally and internationally and provides an opportunity for aspiring golfing enthusiasts to be trained on premium turf equipment to give them an advantage in the industry.
African Turf Academy (ATA) is a golf and golf turf institute that offers programs that are geared towards producing competent and enthusiastic golfers, turf managers and industry professionals. With the help of state of the art technologies, curriculum development, and a strong international network, the academy is committed to assisting participants to develop the right attitude, knowledge and skills to excel in their careers in golf and turf management.
Have a look at the curriculum here:
Golf Course Management Modules
- Golf Course Maintenance
- Golf Machinery Maintenance
- Turfgrass Identification & Production
- Plant Husbandry
- Sportsturf Nutrition
- Sportsturf Soils & Rootzones
- Golf Course Design & Construction
- Golf Course Drainage & Irrigation
- Tournament Preparation, Etiquette & Rules
Business Management Modules
- Role of the manager
- Business communication
- Occupational learning and second language communication
- Problem solving
- Leading and motivating a team
- The code of conduct and customer service standards
- Time management
- Performance management
Tour Player Development Programme
- Mid-week unlimited membership at Silver Lakes golf course
- 3 x 60 minute group coaching sessions per week
- Flightscope swing analysis
- Video analysis
- Unlimited balls on Silver Lakes driving range
- 2 x Monthly mental conditioning group sessions
- Tournament entry advice and planning
- Course strategy sessions
- Weekly match play games
- Order of Merit system
- Statistics record (fairways, greens, putts, scrambling)
- 4 ATA shirts
- Rules of golf education
- Code of Conduct & Discipline Policy
- Weekly attendance reporting
Students are now presented with the opportunity to pursue a career path on the industry side and work with a world-famous golf course as part of the practical leg of the curriculum. Students of ATA are now able to master their greenkeeping skills on John Deere golf and turf equipment and learn the intricacies of the trade on premium equipment that is used on the best golf courses in the world.
African Turf Academy offers the following qualification: the International Greenkeeping Qualification is a two-year full-time programme of study running in conjunction with the Tour Player Development Programme. On successful completion of the International Greenkeeping Qualification students receive an internationally recognised National Certificate in Greenkeeping from Elmwood College St Andrews Scotland.
Turf and course management will always be a core driver at AFGRI Equipment and John Deere. We look forward to following the professional careers of the students as they spread their wings in the industry!
Are you interested in a career in the Golf and Turf Industry? Visit The African Turf Academy Website
Want to check it out for yourself? Watch this space, the Open Day is in October 2022, the date to be announced…