Growing Turfgrass Graduates: Tools to Boost Green Industry Recruiting

Ask any landscape professional about business; talent is usually the hot topic. Finding qualified and motivated candidates to work in this dynamic industry seems to be half the business battle. 

Yet surprisingly, college turfgrass programs are decreasing or folding across the country. Golf Course Management Online estimates a 75% decrease in college turfgrass enrollment since the peak of the 2000s, with three universities pausing or discontinuing their programs completely. 

Some turfgrass students may have migrated to community colleges, but high-skilled management positions demanding scientific understanding and decision-making often require greater depth of study. That need remains.

“The demand for turfgrass managers trained in turfgrass culture, pest/weed control, soil science, and irrigation management has grown in the last five years,” said Grady Miller, North Carolina State University turfgrass professor and extension specialist. “And while positions in the golf and sports turf industries are popular for graduates, there are many other turfgrass industries that are looking to hire our graduates.” 

Read the full article by Jennifer Howard in NC State’s Crop and Soil Science News.