Green Start Academy 2018: Apply now

The educational and networking event for assistant superintendents will welcome 50 members to its 2018 class this fall.


Green Start Academy

John Deere Golf and Bayer Environmental Science are now accepting applications for the 13th annual Green Start Academy (GSA). Applications can be submitted on the Green Start Academy website through June 25.

Fifty applicants will be selected to attend the event, held Oct. 24-26 in North Carolina. Assistant superintendents will be notified of their selection during the week of Aug. 6. Travel costs are supported by John Deere and Bayer.

Open to assistant superintendents from the U.S. and Canada, Green Start Academy offers an opportunity for attendees to advance their careers, develop critical business skills, and network with prominent professionals in the industry.

“The Green Start Academy is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for assistant superintendents,” says Ren Wilkes, marketing manager for John Deere Golf. “As a leader in the golf industry, we know it is important to help shape the next generation of superintendents. For more than 12 years, we have witnessed countless GSA alumni use their experiences from the event to propel their careers and further the game of golf.”

As part of Green Start Academy, attendees will travel to the Bayer Development and Training Center in Clayton, N.C., the John Deere Turf Care factory in nearby Fuquay-Varina, and the John Deere headquarters in Cary, N.C. In addition to getting a behind-the-scenes look at the John Deere and Bayer facilities, attendees will be able to network with and learn from top golf industry professionals to gain invaluable, career-enhancing insights.

“As every superintendent knows, turf care is only part of the job,” says David Wells, golf segment manager for Bayer. “Networking, budgeting, leadership and other skills are critical too. GSA was designed to cultivate those skills, and to provide a venue for assistants to meet one-on-one with both their peers and those they aspire to emulate. We’re honored to help assistants grow their roles as future leaders of golf course management through GSA each year.”

David Delsandro, grounds superintendent at Oakmont (Pa.) Country Club and an adviser for the 2018 Green Start Academy, has seen firsthand the program’s value.

“Attending Green Start Academy was a defining moment in my professional development,” says Delsandro, a 2006 Green Start Academy alumnus and a 16-year GCSAA member. “John Deere and Bayer provided a first-class, fantastic experience. Each year I continue to recommend that all of our assistant superintendents apply.”