Students Learning Turf Management At Southeast Tech


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Warmer weather has students hitting the putting green at Southeast Tech this week. No, they’re not golfing. It’s all part of the turf management program. 

Mowing the green behind Southeast Tech, Jace Roman is happy to be doing what he loves. The St. Louis-native initially moved to South Dakota to play football for the Jackrabbits but had to switch gears. 

“Couple injuries kind of derailed that a little bit,” Roman said. 

After struggling to find a major at SDSU he was passionate about, he signed up for the turf management program here in Sioux Falls in 2017. That led to an exciting opportunity.  

Roman actually spent the last summer interning at the prestigious Oakmont Country Club which has hosted U.S. Opens in the past. 

“At my internship last summer, I loved going to work every day. It didn’t matter that we were getting in there early. I loved the work that I was doing,” Roman said. 

Thanks to Turf Management instructor Cory Borgen, he also knew what he was doing. 

“Fertilizer sprays, cutting greens, mowing bunker banks,” Roman said. 

Borgen says his students go on to work a variety of jobs after graduating.  

“Some of them are at golf courses with PGA events or Major League Baseball,” Borgen said.

Others stay at local courses, work with the parks and recreation department or take care of the grounds at local schools. 

“I’ve been working here for 15 years and I’ve seen the demand only increase. The last two years has been phenomenal for placement with internships and jobs once they graduate,” Borgen said. 

For Roman, he’s glad he landed in the right spot. 

“This is where I’m going to be in my career,” Roman said. 

Roman’s goal after graduating from the two-year program is to become the superintendent of a golf course. 

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