The importance of internships
Practical work experience is a necessary part of the learning process as you train to become a competent golf course superintendent. The primary purpose of a good internship program should be to expose you to the practical side of the golf course management industry. Exposure to the management side of the operation will assist you in tailoring your education to best meet your career goals.
Why an internship?
Experience helps you better understand classroom theories and information, and how they are applied to real conditions on the golf course. It is also an excellent way to prepare for the transition from the classroom to the workplace. Also, an internship allows you to develop personal contacts that may lead to job placement opportunities and build self-confidence, leadership and good communication skills while working with others.
Colleges and internships
In addition to academic development, many schools offer an internship or cooperative work program where you can get credit for working on a golf course. These programs provide the opportunity to experience on-the-job training at a golf course, analyze the golf course management business operation, develop personal contacts and job placement opportunities, and build self-confidence and leadership ability while working with others. You should take advantage of these programs.
Many two-year and some four-year schools require on-the-job training. Some schools even have job placement assistance to coordinate this training for you, while others leave it up to you to make all the arrangements.
If the school you choose does not offer an internship or cooperative work program, it is strongly recommended that you work on a golf course during summer breaks and whenever possible. If the school offers a work program but credit is only given once, you are still encouraged to gain as much varied work experience as possible during your school years. Experience makes a difference when competing for the more attractive positions and locations.