Oman, South Africa, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates are just a selection of the worldwide destinations that will launch the careers of the latest graduates of the PGA-accredited Applied Golf Management Studies degree (AGMS).
The class of 2013 were reunited at the University of Birmingham this week to collect that cherished piece of paper acknowledging their three years of hard work.
Underneath the caps and gowns were an industrious bunch of young men and women celebrating their achievements and embracing the chance to pursue careers in the golf industry and primarily as PGA Professionals.
The AGMS course, run jointly between the University of Birmingham and the PGA, arms graduates with a comprehensive knowledge of golf including business and event management, equipment technology, coaching theory and sport science. In addition, each student undergoes three work placements at the end of each year of study.
Past graduates are located around the UK and across the world in a wide range of roles from administration, to business to coaching. Past graduates include Eleanor Woodhall, who has a significant role with the 2018 Ryder Cup organisers in France and Nick Brennan, head professional at Bowood Golf and Country Club, who is poised to become the first AGMS graduate to play in the Great Britain and Ireland PGA Cup team this September.
This year’s alumni include 22-year-old David Taylor, who achieved first class honours and is now set to work as a PGA Professional in Oman with fellow graduate Jade Lucas.
“I was quite nervous before getting my results but after three years of hard work it paid off. I’m really proud and happy to have achieved what I have,” said Taylor.
“It’s not just getting a ‘first’ but also the experiences I have got from the course. I had a great opportunity to do placements in Austria and the Ukraine. Those experiences almost mean as much as getting the first.
“They have set me up to go on and get a job in Oman, which I have just secured. The whole package has been great.
“I wasn’t sure which route I wanted to go down, if it was coaching or more towards business and management. I got a real mixture of all of this and it has given me a brilliant understanding of various areas of the industry, provided great contacts and opened up a number of doors for me.
“I think the selling point is the unique nature of the course. Everything we cover is directly related to what we are doing in our careers day in day out. It sets you up great for going into the golf industry.”
Taylor was also full of praise for the mentoring provided by Advanced PGA Professional Nick Solski during a placement in Ukraine.
“I learned a lot from Nick in terms of coaching and business,” he added. “He was a very sociable guy and I learned a lot about using your interpersonal skills. He has inspired me to travel and work in different countries and not be afraid to go to places where you may not think of golf. I learned a lot of how to deal with different cultures and people who don’t speak English and how to deal with that. Nick taught me well and I owe him quite a lot.”
PGA Captain Neil Selwyn-Smith, a tutor on the AGMS course, encouraged the graduates to embrace the profession and to take full advantage of the opportunities offered with their skills in great demand.
“You are at the start of your careers and are in pole position,” he said. “Those letters after your name are well sought after in the industry.
“I am full of admiration as you are about to embark on a great journey and I implore you not to pass up this great opportunity.”
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