Education has to be the key to all associations and indeed greenkeepers in achieving the highest level of professionalism within our industry and therefore greater recognition within the game of golf. FEGGA’s role with formal education has been to set the standards and this leading to what is now Greenkeeper Training Europe – www.greenkeepertraining.com
Greenkeeper Training Europe has now produced standards at 3 levels and will through its work be able to assist Countries with guidance on all aspects of formal greenkeeping education.
Continuous learning is a very important part of day to day learning and FEGGA provides support in this area through advice and also its Roadshow events that have now been operated in some 14 Countries over the past ten years. FEGGA also has a speaker bank that offers its Members Associations contact with a range of speaker’s world-wide covering industry learning presentations.
In keeping this theme, FEGGA again supporting new Golf developing Countries with Roadshows and education Tours.
The first Roadshow was in Iceland, and FEGGA providing support for a variety of lectures, but some specifically on Winter Management.
The second Roadshow was in Estonia, and was part of the FEGGA Development programme, providing development support for new golf developing Countries and Associations. Estonia has 8 golf courses, and they proudly supported this Roadshow with over 50 delegates attending. They are still in the early stages of their development, but with the support from FEGGA and the expertise that comes from the 24 member associations, they are truly benefiting from all this valuable experience, and becoming a strong member of the FEGGA family.
More and more National Greenkeeper Associations are combining football with golf among their membership services. Many see this as a great opportunity to reach out to more turf specialists with regards to their educational needs, and also other association events, that can be run in a more sustainable manner.
With this in mind, we have recently supported 6 Greenkeepers/Groundsman from Bulgaria whom wanted to gain experience in seeing grounds management in football within England. We were able to arrange visits to a wide range of clubs, allowing them to gain considerable knowledge and experience in the process of pitch renovation, and allowing new skills and development to be taken back home with them.
Greenkeeper Training Europe (GT-E)
At the Federation of European Golf Greenkeepers Association (FEGGA) annual conference held in January 2006, the member Associations took a decision to support this initiative. It was later that same year that the first edition of Pan European Standards was written. The Standards were written by a selected group of educational professionals from various parts of Europe, put together by FEGGA.
Funding support from The R&A, EGA and FEGGA has allowed the GT-E to develop 3 levels of Standards and an advice and guidance service.
Since 2006, the GT-E has helped many countries develop, improve and establish a structure of greenkeeper training, along with engaging in EU projects:
- Assisted with start-up education in Lithuania, Estonia
- Norway used the Pan European Standards, and the knowledge base of GT-E to get government agreement on their newly established equivalent NVQ level 2
- Assisted within the Green-E project
- Partner of the GreenQAmpus project
A New Future for Greenkeeper Training Europe
Up to this time the GT-E has been run as an independent organisation, and following the retirement of key directors, FEGGA feel it is the perfect time to review the future of the GT-E. Having consulted with a wider group of organisations, and with the FEGGA Members Associations, it has now been agreed that FEGGA will take on the full ownership of the GT-E.
A new business plan is being developed, and will have a small sub-committee of people made up of Dean Cleaver, past director of the GT-E and Executive Officer of FEGGA, along with Kamil Pecenka, Chairman of FEGGA, and Stig Persson, Past Chairman of FEGGA.
As part of the thinking in moving forward:
- It clearly makes sense for a European organisation (FEGGA) to be running and supporting European education
- It’s very important that the GT-E continues to maintain the Pan European Standards and its stand-alone website
- It will continue to Provide future support to European Countries and organisations
- The GT-E will provide the platform to gain future EU projects
- Continue to provide support for new Golf developing Countries
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