BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI

BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI: The British & International Golf Greenkeepers Association has revealed the 20 ambitious greenkeepers who will participate in the Future Turf Managers Initiative 2021. 

Each year Jacobsen, which celebrates its 100thanniversary in 2021, opens the doors of its headquarters in Ipswich to 20 BIGGA members who have earned a place on the groundbreaking course by demonstrating their commitment to the profession and eagerness to learn.

BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI

BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, BIGGA and Jacobsen have created a new format for FTMI that will give the delegates a hybrid learning experience. The majority of the education and mentoring sessions will commence in April. An in-person event is then scheduled to take place in the autumn, which will enable delegates to meet in person and enjoy a tour of the Jacobsen factory. There will also be a learning session and formal graduation ceremony.

Each year FTMI pushes 20 BIGGA members out of their comfort zones, but in return they receive access to professional development experts and experienced mentors who provide them with a wide range of knowledge and skills that will prove invaluable as their careers progress.

FTMI was hosted first by BIGGA and Jacobsen 2013 and since then has expanded around the world, with similar programmes being introduced in Spain, Portugal, Australia and New Zealand.

Sami Strutt, Head of Learning and Development at BIGGA, said: “FTMI 2020 was one of the last in-person events hosted by BIGGA before the pandemic really hit and all our worlds changed. Since then BIGGA members have come to realise just how important continuing professional development can be for your own mental health and how it helps provide a platform where so many of us can come together as a community, albeit in socially-distanced manners.

“We’re told that the coronavirus pandemic will impact the economy for years to come and as part of that, competition for jobs is going to be fiercer than ever. I’m proud that these 20 successful candidates will be equipped with the best tools available to them to make the step up and achieve their career ambitions.”

BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI

BIGGA and Jacobsen to host FTMI

Will Carr, Jacobsen UK Sales Director said: “We are a proud member of the turf industry and work daily with greenkeepers, grounds people and volunteers who all share a passion for their turf asset. That overarching passion has always been there, but in recent times it has been highlighted.

“The level of dedication from professionals through to volunteers is always outstanding and we have tried to match that in our own way with educational programmes such as the Future Turf Managers Initiative and by sponsoring various industry events and awards that recognize great work and dedication.”

The members of the FTMI Class of 2021 are:

  • Leon Brant, greenkeeper, Wexham Park Golf Centre
  • Christopher Clark, first assistant, Prince’s Golf Club
  • William Curran, assistant, Crowborough Beacon Golf Club
  • Daryn Curtis, assistant, Royal Mid-Surrey Golf Club
  • Vincent Demarzo, deputy head greenkeeper, The Belfry
  • Anthony Dineen, deputy head greenkeeper, Thorndon Park Golf Club
  • Paul Fowkes, deputy head greenkeeper, Rothley Park Golf Club
  • John Hockley, deputy head greenkeeper, Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club
  • Conchobhar Kerr, first assistant, Royal Portrush Golf Club
  • Stephen Lawlor, first assistant, St Andrews Links Trust
  • Stephen Lindsay, deputy golf courses manager, The Gleneagles Hotel
  • Jason Norwood, greenkeeper, Reay Golf Club
  • Simon Parmenter, deputy head greenkeeper, Sunningdale Golf Club
  • Liam Pigden, first assistant, Burnham and Berrow Golf Club
  • Mark Reid, first assistant, Lanark Golf Club
  • Joseph Spadaccini, greenkeeper, Stoneham Golf Club
  • Andrew Weeks, deputy head greenkeeper, The Wisley Golf Club
  • Craig Woodman, greenkeeper, Bramshaw Golf Club
  • Jamie Wright, first assistant, Huntercombe Golf Club

Kimberley Yeldham, deputy head greenkeeper, Barnham Broom Hotel Golf Club

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BIGGA Members To Take Part In FTMI

BIGGA Members To Take Part In FTMI: Each year Jacobsen, a Textron Golf brand, invites 20 ambitious greenkeepers to its headquarters in Ipswich to undertake high quality education designed to help them take the next step into golf course management.

Each of the greenkeepers is a member of the British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association, which has worked alongside Jacobsen to provide the education programme for 20 members every year since 2013. FTMI was born in the UK but has rapidly expanded in the years since and has been introduced in Spain, Portugal, Australia and New Zealand.

BIGGA Members To Take Part In FTMI

Across two days of intense education, high quality speakers and experienced mentors, themselves course managers and head greenkeepers, will provide candidates with a wide range of knowledge and skills that will prove invaluable as their careers progress.

BIGGA is proud to reveal the members who have been selected to take part in the 2019 edition of FTMI, to take place from Tuesday 5 to Thursday 7 March 2019.

The successful candidates for the “FTMI Class of 2018” are:

Andrew Wilson, deputy course manager, Whitecraigs Golf Club;
Ben Hunter, deputy course manager, The Richmond Golf Club;
Ben Williams, first assistant greenkeeper, Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club;
Christopher Jones, deputy course manager, St Anne’s Old Links;
Craig Berry, course supervisor, St Andrews Links Trust;
David Stewart, deputy head greenkeeper, Walmley Golf Club;
Edward Campbell, deputy course manager, Sandford Springs Golf Club;
Gareth Hunt, deputy head greenkeeper, Cricket St Thomas Golf Club;
Graeme Davidson, assistant greenkeeper, Murrayfield Golf Club;
James Bruder, deputy course manager, East Berkshire Golf Club;
James Cleaver, senior greenkeeper, The Belfry;
John Scurfield, first assistant, Morpeth Golf Club;
Luke Hine, deputy head greenkeeper, Gaudet Luce Golf Club;
Michael Hughes, deputy course manager, Scotscraig Golf Club;
Phil Worth, first assistant greenkeeper, Prestbury Golf Club;
Sam Sweetzer, assistant greenkeeper, Queenwood Golf Club;
Scott Corrigan, assistant greenkeeper, Royal Troon Golf Club;
Scott Logan, first assistant greenkeeper, Royal Bled Golf Club, Slovenia;
Simon Pyett, greenkeeper, Halesworth Golf Club;
Tim Brewster, deputy head greenkeeper, Reigate Hill Golf Club.

Jacobsen and BIGGA recognise the importance of preparing the next generation of greenkeepers to take on a management role at a golf club. FTMI has been designed to provide practical tools and guidance to help delegates pursue their career aspirations through this professional development course.

BIGGA Members To Take Part In FTMI

Karen Proctor, Director Global Marketing at Textron Golf, said: “Congratulations to all 20 delegates chosen to take part in FTMI 2019. Each year the number of applicants increases, giving us a very tough job to choose just 20!

“We are looking forward to welcoming the class of 2019 to Ipswich in March and providing a unique experience that will help the delegates on their way to achieving their career goals.”

Sami Strutt, Head of Member Development at BIGGA, said: “FTMI pushes our members out of their comfort zones. Each of the successful candidates will be at the point in their career where they are itching to take the next step in their career. But what does that mean in a practical sense and what skills do you need to learn that you may not gain in your day-to-day working life?

“FTMI provides 20 ambitious BIGGA members with the necessary skills to take that next step. Each year the education gets better and better as we find out more about what the delegates find most useful and relevant as they work towards their career goals.

“We’re delighted that so many FTMI graduates have built upon their experience and are now embarking upon careers in course management. I’m sure the same will soon be true of this year’s 20 delegates, who were all of an incredibly high standard.”

For a closer look at FTMI, check out this video on the BIGGA YouTube page:

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FTMI Volunteers At The Ryder Cup

FTMI Volunteers At The Ryder Cup: Jacobsen and BIGGA have selected a group of Future Turf Manager Initiative (FTMI) graduates to assist the course maintenance team during the 2018 Ryder Cup at Le Golf National in France.

One delegate from each FTMI in the past five years has been selected to volunteer at the event, with one more person due to be chosen from the FTMI class of 2018.

FTMI Volunteers At The Ryder Cup

The chosen BIGGA members are:

  1. Leigh Powell, Windlesham Golf Club (FTMI Class of 2013)
  2. Peter Moore, The Wentworth Club (FTMI Class of 2014)
  3. Gavin Neill, St Andrews Links Trust (FTMI Class of 2015)
  4. Richard Johnstone, Nairn Dunbar Golf Links (FTMI Class of 2016)
  5. Adrian McCullough, JCB (FTMI Class of 2017)

Jacobsen and BIGGA have worked closely with Alejandro Reyes, Golf Courses and Estates Manager at Le Golf National, to provide this potentially career-defining opportunity for BIGGA members for the very first time.

Next year’s delegates were recently announced, and the 20 BIGGA members selected to take part will attend the three-day event at Jacobsen’s HQ in Ipswich from 6-8 March 2018.

Aimed at up and coming greenkeepers who want to make the leap to Course Manager, FTMI focuses on personal and professional development. The FTMI programme utilises the expertise of leading Course Managers, dynamic trainers and industry experts to mentor and educate the next generation of industry leaders.

In 2018, The Ryder Cup will be held in Continental Europe for only the second time in its history. Le Golf National will be hosting the biennial match on its spectacular L’Albatros course. Alejandro and his team of approximately thirty greenkeepers have completed extensive renovation work in the lead up to hosting the event. Renovation work has included a brand-new drainage system capable of draining 90mm of surface water within three hours on all playable surfaces, fibre optics have been installed for on-course connectivity and many holes have been completely renovated.

During the Ryder Cup, which takes place between 28-30 September 2018, 180 members of staff, including 140 volunteers, will be manicuring the golf course to ensure that the playing surfaces are in pristine condition for the duration of the matches.

Situated around 20 miles south west of Paris, the spectacular course is one of the best in the world for spectators and is consistently ranked in Europe’s top ten courses. Le Golf National has hosted the French Open every year, except for two years, since 1991.

Commenting on the unique volunteering opportunity, Director of International Golf Sales at Textron Golf, Andre Andrade, said: “We feel privileged to be able to offer FTMI delegates the experience of volunteering at the Ryder Cup. It is a huge event, and one I am sure they will remember for the rest of their lives. This opportunity is testament to the close working relationship that Jacobsen has with Le Golf National, and we thank the team there for allowing us to make this happen. Jacobsen is very proud to be an official supplier to the 2018 Ryder Cup, and we look forward to taking the lucky FTMI delegates with us to France next year.”

BIGGA CEO Jim Croxton said: “It may only be six years old, but FTMI has already proven to be an incredible success, with many of the programme’s graduates going on to secure management roles, and the association is extremely grateful to Textron Golf for their continued investment in BIGGA members.

“I’d also like to thank Alejandro Reyes for enabling this incredible opportunity for six FTMI graduates. The 2018 Ryder Cup is sure to once again be a passionate, hard-fought competition, and with an estimated 500 million viewers worldwide in 2016, the course will no doubt be under closer scrutiny than any other in history. I wish Alejandro the greatest success, and I hope that our guys are able to help the home team achieve their goals in whatever way they can.”

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