Coastal Carolina University and Clemson University, two of the 11 schools in the United States with accredited Professional Golf Management (PGM) programs, will go head-to-head in the 2001 Director's Cup, a new competition to help showcase their unique programs.
The friendly intrastate matchup will be held Nov. 30 to Dec. 2 at two of Myrtle Beach's top golf courses, the Rees Jones-designed Arcadian Shores and the traditional Robert Trent Jones-designed Dunes Golf and Beach Club. Each university will field an eight-person team to compete in a 54-hole Ryder Cup format. Participants must be full-time students enrolled in their school's PGM program. Varsity golf members are not eligible to participate. Captaining the 2001 teams will be PGA members Dan Drane of Clemson and David Hackney of Coastal.
Coastal initiated its PGM program in fall 1997 in response to the Grand Strand's bustling golf industry, which has more than 100 courses situated within 40 miles of the university. Coastal is also the only institution that has an international component to its PGM program, as more than 20 students from the Autonomous University in Barcelona, Spain, are enrolled in the program. The PGM programs are endorsed by the Professional Golfers' Association of America (PGA).
In Coastal's PGM program, students must complete the requirements of a bachelor of science degree in marketing from the E. Craig Wall Sr. College of Business Administration and serve 16 months of internships at area golf courses. Students must also complete the PGA of America's Playing Ability Test (PAT), prior to their third year. One of the requirements for admission to the program is having outstanding playing ability with proof of a handicap of eight or less. Students must also complete the Golf Professional Training Program (GPTP), a three-level independent course on various aspects of the golf business. Those who complete the classwork, internships and GPTP are on course to obtain their PGA Class A certification, which is the critical credential for entering a career in the U.S. golf industry. Successful PGM graduates are qualified for a variety of careers, such as club or teaching professionals, sales representatives, general managers, marketing or public relations directors.
The PGA allows accredited schools to enroll up to 300 students per program. Courses include accounting, finance, production, and marketing practices and principles. Students also study basic business concepts such as pricing, promotion and distribution of goods and services and gain specialized knowledge in the areas of landscape design, turf management, and marketing strategy and research. Internships at local golf courses under the direction of PGA Class A professionals play an essential role in the students' development.
The Director's Cup competition begins at Arcadian Shores on Saturday, Dec. 1, with the final singles matches beginning at the Dunes on Sunday, Dec. 2. Spectators are welcome.
For more information about the Director's Cup, contact David Hackney at 349-2972; to learn more about Coastal's PGM program, contact Andy Hendrick, program director, at 349-2647.