Olds College Campus News

13.08.26-Olds.logoby Jason Pick, Instructor, Turf Management Program

Fall Tournaments and ACAC Championship

With the summer coming to a close, we welcome 58 new and returning turf students this year in our diploma and degree programs at Olds College. 

The fall is a busy time for us as we will attempt to visit five golf courses before the November snow.  Enhancing student understanding of the golf course management industry by hearing the different perspectives of Alberta superintendents has proven an educational and enjoyable start to the year.  Olds Highlands superintendent Jason Clouston hosts the annual Fall Golf Classic on September 11th , and later ACAC national golf finals, where our golf team in its second year, aspire to take the title. The turfies are looking forward to tournament preparation for both events, and will cheer on our centennial team under Head coach Ian Morrow.  Ian is setting up the teams new golf simulator as we speak – now providing the Olds College Golf team an indoor facility to analyse their swing like the pros. 

Prairie Turfgrass Research Center

The newly improved Prairie Turfgrass Research Center has been relocated, boasting over 20,000ft² of USGA specification green research space under the direction of Executive Director Jim Ross. Partnered with the Center of Innovation, selected plots are seeded to bentgrass blends and poa annua, as well as extensive bluegrass testing plots within the7.4ha allocatted site.  The upgraded facility provides students a hands-on approach to investigating and solving the many challenges found in the field.  Offering a stage where theory meets practice, students will welcome back their “outdoor labratory” and training facility.    

13.08.26-PTRCExecutive Director of the PTRC, Jim Ross, surveys the new 20,000 ft sq. USGA research green

Apple partnership and Online Offerings

This year all students entering Olds College have required an Ipad4 as part of their necessary course supplies.  Complemented by a massive 1Gig upgrade to WIFI speed across campus, students will notice the highest WIFI connection speed among all other Canadian institutions. This incentive was enhanced by the Colleges summer upgrade of the Moodle online learning system, subsequently improving the accessibility of course resources and their learning tools.  Timely with these mobile advances, are two new online offerings through continuing education.  The first a study on “the Business of Golf”; for ambitious and experienced turf managers who crave a greater understanding of food and beverage, golf cart and green fee economics, and those alternative profit centers which help drive revenue for your club.

New Industry Designation

The other online course offering has partnered with Audubon International to provide an exciting new globally recognized environmental designation.  Created for golf course and recreational facility professionals looking to upgrade their stewardship training, it echoes those principles of the Audubon certification program for golf courses. The rigorous fifteen week course offers its students a new designation:  Audubon International Certified Environmental Professional (AICEP).  The first of its kind in North America, the AICEP for Golf Courses is available exclusively through Olds College, delivered concurrent to face to face delivery.  Designed to be manageable for those working in the field, students can complete the curriculum on their own schedule. This partnership designation may further offer those successful candidates a proactive response to the pesticide debate, illustrating a globally recognized commitment to environmental stewardship.

For program information, call admissions 1-800-611-6537, or access the link to Olds College’s Continuing Education Department. Additional information through Audubon International’s special project coordinator Laura Karosic laura@auduboninternational.org or Jason Pick at jpick@oldscollege.ca.  Check out the Olds College turf club blog http://octurf.blogspot.ca/   and ongoing program events on twitter @JasonJPick      ! JP