Starting in January 2014 Les Roches Marbella will begin the eighth annual intake of the Postgraduate Diploma in Golf Management, taught entirely in English and with a duration of one year.
The Postgraduate Diploma in Golf Management is aimed at university graduates and professionals with a minimum of five years’ experience in the golf industry who want specialized business training in the management of golf courses and related businesses. It has been designed to combine theory, personal development, management, and leadership in order to expand the range of professional opportunities that can be accessed in the golf industry and other sectors directly and indirectly related to this activity.
The course’s curriculum is designed by industry professionals and is divided into two semesters. During the first semester, students study different subjects related to management techniques, involving 600 hours on the Les Roches Marbella campus. This followed by the second semester in which students carry out an internship in an organization or facility with a golf course and in one or more departments.
Postgraduates from Les Roches Marbella face a significant and growing market: companies involved in the golf industry move in a complex environment that is determined by its own internal structure and dynamic relationships with other sectors associated with the industry. These include suppliers, partners, employees, clubs, pro shops and tour operators, among others. As a result of these circumstances we are witnessing a new state of affairs, which increases the need for professionals who can manage and monetize all these resources.
Hosteltur magazine, in an article published in June 2013, noted that golf tourism is one of the European Union’s fastest growing sectors. The last annual report of the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO) indicates that global sales of sport-related holiday courses grew by about 9.3% in 2012 compared with the previous year. The figures in the report indicate that the entity’s operators catered to 1.6 million golfers in 2012, with sales of golf holidays totalling over 1,500 million euros. Spain, meanwhile, remains the main European destination for golf tourists and holds a market share of around 40%. (You can see the report’s full results in the article published by Hosteltur, here.)
The Postgraduate Diploma in Golf Management has a faculty composed of experts in the subjects they teach. They bring extensive academic training and professional experience, including golf course designers, golf course managers, professionals directly related to the game of golf and the different areas of golf course management. Les Roches Marbella also maintains a collaboration agreement with Troon Golf, the world leader in the sector with twenty years’ experience overseeing operations in more than 200 golf courses spread over 26 countries around the world.
In addition, the School has reached agreements with numerous golf courses and international companies to provide internships, many of them near the Campus: Marbella Club Golf Resort, Flamingos Golf (Ritz-Carlton), Finca Cortesín Golf Club, Calanova Golf, Cabopino Golf Marbella, Rio Real Golf, Golf Antequera, Villanueva Golf and La Cala Golf Resort, among others.
Graduates Making A Difference
Alumni like Matt Bryers and Saab Naimi, or students currently pursuing the seventh edition of the postgraduate course such as Santiago Ramirez, provide insight through their testimonies of the job opportunities available to graduates.
For Matt Bryers, Operations Manager for the AT & T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in Monterey (California, USA), “The directors of the golf industry have changed in recent years. Currently a director of golf is more than a business manager or professional who has redirected his career in the operational side of the business; he is a manager specializing in golf management. This is the key to what I learned and experienced at Les Roches Marbella where I obtained the knowledge and management skills that the golf industry demands and requires today. Les Roches Marbella has prepared me to be a director with leadership skills and personal initiative geared towards efficiency and cost-effectiveness for each type of golf course in a growing industry.”
Meanwhile Saab Naimi, CEO of Oued Fes Golf (complex managed by Troon Golf), particularly values the relevant practical training acquired during his stay at Les Roches Marbella: “The collaborations for internships with golf courses and centers are fundamental in making this a successful Postgraduate program. It not only provides students with a top-level professional experience but also offers basic tools needed for jobs with responsibility in the future”.
In the case of Santiago Ramirez, he believes that “Les Roches Marbella has been a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the golf industry. “The university has given me the opportunity to meet many professionals in the industry and has helped me get a job at a PGA Tour Tournament. I learned a lot including how to maintain a green on a golf course and how to differentiate between different types of grass. The university is located in a very beautiful place with a warm and sunny climate.”
Solid Professional Training
The Postgraduate Diploma in Golf Course Management from Les Roches Marbella is the best option to acquire the knowledge demanded by the golf industry today. There is a growing urgency for managers who possess a strong ability to respond with creativity and professionalism to the new challenges of the industry and identify and analyze problems, applying the right solutions and with a strong focus on customer service. In short, people with leadership skills, team work skills and a body of knowledge that combines the theoretical with the practical side of the gold industry.