Adapting to a new generation of golfers

4 tips for PGA Professionals to grow golf at a local college campus

By Kris Hart

If you are a PGA Professional looking to grow your business at a local college or university, below highlights 4 simple tips which can help you grow your golf lesson business and gain revenue for your golf course.

More Resources for Golf Courses

1)Reach out to the campus intramural director

After making 300+ calls to the athletic department at universities this summer, a common theme I heard from the staff within the athletic department was an interest in golf, but difficulty with cost, getting to the course, and not having the administrator who knows how to teach the game. Intramural and athletic departments have budgets for extracurricular activities. Instead of the athletic department spending money on a bowling outing or lazer tag event, pick up the phone and introduce yourself as the local golf professional that wants to help grow golf on campus. PS – Many people in the athletic department play golf and could lead to some lesson revenue for you too.

2) Get involved with the club golf team on campus

Did you know there are over 400 colleges that have club golf teams on their campus through the NCCGA? If your golf course is located near a large college campus, there is a good chance a club is active or forming on campus. Club golf teams have between 10-200 players in their clubs and can be a great opportunity for you to get lesson and greens fee revenue from a group of avid players and newbies picking up the game.

Need help getting in touch with a local club golf team or want to help get club golf going at a campus near you? Contact Travis Richardson (, the NCCGA Director and he can introduce you locally to a club team about coaching the team.

3) Contact campus life

College campuses are a tight knit community. If you walk down the halls of a college campus you will see fliers advertising clubs, events, and activities every week. Usually these activities are put on by the student government or a student programming board. Typically these groups are student run, but there is a group of administration that oversees the group. If I was a golf professional, I would call up the director of student life and offer the opportunity to run an on-campus golf clinic for students in the fall. If you can set it up, the student programming group will push and market your clinic on campus through fliers and emails. By the way, there are budgets for every activity on campus and there is a good chance you can get paid for running a group golf clinic and helping grow the game on campus.

4) Offer a college rate for students and faculty

Every golf course professional and owner hates the “d-word”. Discounting is a touchy subject in the golf industry especially with online tee time companies getting a lot of scrutiny. The fact of the matter is, college students have a very limited budget and deciding between golf money or beer money is a big decision. Most golf courses have a junior and senior rate, but often times do not have a college rate. Offering a college rate for students and perhaps a faculty rate will encourage these players to come to the course more often. Both faculty and students are used to getting deals. We need to realize that all of our competitors (movies, concerts, races, and bars) offer deals and student specials. Market your college golf discount for free.

The Oregon Golf Association recently announced a partnership with Trysting Tree Golf Club, teaming up to provide Oregon State students the opportunity to play more golf at affordable rates. Programs like these help grow the game of golf, and help ensure price isn't a deterrent for budget-concious students.

I hope the above information helps more PGA Professional get involved with golf on their local college campuses. If Nextgengolf or the NCCGA can ever be of service please don't hesitate to let us know! For more guides created exclusively for golf courses, check out our resources section.

Subscribe to stay up to date

Topics: pga professional