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PGA of America Board of Directors Votes to Give Accreditation to FGCU's Professional Gold Management Degree Program
2/11/2005

FORT MYERS, FL - Today, Florida Gulf Coast University announced the Professional Golfers' Association of America board of directors voted to give PGA accreditation to FGCU's Professional Golf Management concentration in the Resort and Hospitality Management baccalaureate degree program, making FGCU only the 16th school to receive the prestigious endorsement since 1975.

FGCU submitted a request for accreditation to the PGA (www.pga.com ) in 2003 and attended a PGA informational meeting in early 2004. That spring, the PGA accepted a rationale statement from FGCU and requested a formal proposal, which FGCU submitted in September and the PGA accepted in December.

Last month, the PGA conducted a site visit to review and corroborate the details of FGCU's proposal including facilities, faculty, curriculum and facility partners. Following the visit, the seven site visit team members recommended to the full PGA board of directors that FGCU become the 16th PGA Professional Golf Management program in the United States. The board voted Feb. 10 to approve FGCU's accreditation.

Professional Golf Management is a concentration in the Bachelor of Science in Resort and Hospitality Management degree program that is offered through the College of Professional Studies.

Upon completion of degree requirements, Professional Golf Management students receive the BS degree and are eligible for PGM certification from the PGA of America. FGCU based the Professional Golf Management curriculum on the PGA's emphasis on skills in three areas: people, business and golf administration.

Graduates are prepared to work as golf directors, head golf professionals, general managers, instruction directors, teaching professionals and facility owners.

The market demand of the golf industry in Southwest Florida, which houses over 160 golf courses, created the need for the Professional Golf Management concentration. Florida State University in Tallahassee is the only other university to offer a PGA/PGM program in Florida.

"I expect 25 students the first year, 75 the second year, and 150 the third year," director of the Professional Golf Management program Stephen Eisenberg said.

By early 2006, FGCU plans to begin construction on the 45,000-square foot Sugden Hall for Resort and Hospitality Management, which was made possible by a $5 million gift from Herbert and Margaret Sugden of Naples, and will house the Resort and Hospitality Management degree program. The gift provided seed money to fund construction and key startup costs for the degree program including the positions of director and some faculty.

FGCU plans to dedicate 4,000-square feet of the new building specifically to house a golf education laboratory for the PGA/PGM program.

For more information, contact Eisenberg at (239) 590-7717.

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