The Lazaridis School of Business & Economics in Waterloo, Ontario is preparing for the first intake of students to their MBA program with a specialization in Golf & Resort Management. The school at Wilfrid Laurier University is now accepting applications for a program that will begin this August.
This new, one of a kind, specialization is being offered in partnership with the Golf Management Institute of Canada (GMIC), a leader in golf management education and training that has served Canada’s $13 billion golf industry since 1999.
“We are excited to be working with our golf and resort industry partners to be the first in Canada to offer this kind of specialization in an MBA program,” said Dr. Hugh Munro, Director of Laurier’s MBA program. “Our goal is to develop managerial talent to enhance the performance of those firms operating in this challenging global industry, and to provide exciting career opportunities for our graduates in the golf and resort sector.”
Laurier prides itself on preparing graduates who are adaptive and able to handle the increasing complexity and dynamics of business. The golf industry is no exception. A big part of this new specialization is designing immersive learning opportunities into the curriculum that help to ground theoretical concepts in business practice. The Golf and Resort Industry constitutes a fertile domain for both applying management knowledge,and for developing management talent. With over 32,000 golf facilities around the world, the industry is global, dynamic,and strategically complex. It faces transformative challenges in the mature developed markets,yet is an important growing economic development engine in many developing economies. Both situations require managers who have the requisite business acumen,and industry specific knowledge to effectively address the inherent challenges and opportunities.
In Canada alone, the Golf and Resort Industry employs over 300,000 workers at more than 2,500 golf courses and resorts across the country. In the United States, the numbers are exponentially larger, with more than 15,000 golf facilities,with the total economic impact of golf in America reaching $176.8 billion, and supporting approximately two million jobs.
“I’m excited about the Golf and Resort Management specialization being offered within Laurier’s MBA program,” said Grant Fraser,founder of the GMIC and Laurier BBA graduate. “The GMIC is thrilled to be working in partnership with Laurier on the delivery of this unique program. This will be the only MBA program in Canada designed to train the next generation of golf business leaders,here at home,and around the world. That will be the focus, to create a specialization that will enable graduates to work in a variety of golf businesses anywhere in the world.”
Here at home, the Canadian golf industry is fully supportive of Laurier’s new MBA specialization. Industry leaders such as Bruce Simmonds, CEO of Pacific Links International, Scott Simmons, CEO of Golf Canada,and Keith Keindel, Executive Director of the Canadian Golf Industry Association have all been instrumental in moving the program forward. In addition, an industry specific Advisory Board comprised of representatives from equipment manufacturers and retailers, facility owners and managers, industry consultants, golf course designers,and club managers has been formed to assist with this exciting initiative.
All involved are committed to developing a program that meets the needs of the global golf and resort sector. This includes providing direction and support with marketing, curriculum development, project opportunities, co-op positions, and post-graduate careers.