After a hectic spring semester, I graduated from Iowa State University with my Ph.D last weekend. Being able to contribute to the industry and assist turf professionals in my home state of Iowa has been a very rewarding experience. This milestone in my professional career was not solely an individual endeavor and many people assisted me along the way. At the risk of omitting someone, I wanted to highlight a few professionals who took a special interest in me.
The Professors – Thanks to all the turf professors at Iowa State. I have taken all of your classes and I continue learning from each one of you. Special thanks to Dr. Nick Christians, my major professor for my graduate studies. Thank you for providing me the opportunity to attend graduate school and giving me the freedom to pursue my passions. Also, special thanks to Dr. Aaron Patton for your advice and friendship.
The Iowa Turfgrass Institute and Iowa GCSA – Thanks to all the individuals who make up our state organization. You have assisted me along the way with scholarships, grants, and land for me to conduct my research projects. Special thanks to Jeff Wendel, CGCS, for allowing me to contribute to the organization and speak at so many conferences and state meetings.
The Superintendents – Thank you for your conversations over the years. You have helped shape my vision of golf course maintenance. Special thanks to John Newton, CGCS, for giving me my first job on a golf course and allowing me to cut my teeth as an assistant Superintendent; Matt McKinnon, for providing me with my first internship; Jim Nicol, CGCS, for giving me the opportunity to work my first major golf tournament; and Brad Owen, for allowing me to realize one of my dreams of working at Augusta National.
So what are my plans for the future? I have accepted a position and will start my professional career at ISU as an Assistant Scientist. My main responsibilities involve conducting research, teaching undergraduates, and assisting with extension related activities.
I will be presenting my newest research project at the June 2 State Meeting at Bos Landen Golf Course in Pella, Iowa. I look forward to seeing you at the meeting.