May 2017

News You Can Use

Enrollment in turfgrass science at colleges and universities has seen a decline in the past 10 to 15 years. In a survey conducted by Golf Course Management magazine, 40 schools were asked about turfgrass program enrollment. 70% have encountered lower enrollment compared to 10 years ago. STMA's Turfgrass Education Council has created a white paper to discuss various options for colleges and universities to implement to help attract students to turfgrass science as a career option. Access the white paper here.

Dr. Fred Grau (left) in a tug-of-war (with unknown person) showing the strength of a new blend of bluegrass and zoysiagrass (circa late 1950s/early 1960s). Dr. Grau helped develop zoysiagrass varieties that require small amounts of water and fertilizer and are used on athletic fields. He was the first turfgrass extension specialist in the U.S. and was located at Pennsylvania State University. The SAFE Foundation, STMA's charity, honors him by awarding the Dr. Fred Grau 2-year scholarship annually to a deserving student.

Every three years the STMA Board of Directors sets the roadmap for the association through a formalized strategic planning process. STMA's current 2015-2017 plan is nearly complete, and the Board will begin the planning process at their summer Board Meeting, using a professional strategic planning facilitator.

Key accomplishments for the current plan include major progress on our PR initiative, our Environmental Facility Certification program, commercial member engagement, and expanding educational resources for members including natural grass resources. To see the top line goals for the 205-2017 strategic plan, click here.

If there are issues your would like for the Board to consider as they forecast our future direction, please send an email to

STMA is excited to announce the introduction of TopGolf to our 2018 Annual Conference in Fort Worth! TopGolf will be replacing the traditional golf tournament setting.

TopGolf, established in 2000, has been taking the golf world by storm with its innovative take on the game. With its microchip technology and hangout-like vibe, it's a great alternative to the traditional setting, inviting individuals who are not experts in the game to be able to play.

Players are placed in climate-controlled "bays," similar to bowling lanes, accompanied by full-service staff and lounges. TopGolf offers addictive point-scoring golf games as well as tournament play to make it fun for all guests, regardless of experience. It has a 240-yard outfield with dartboard-like targets in the ground. Using microchipped golf balls, TopGolf takes care of scoring for you. If you take the game seriously, bring your own clubs – otherwise TopGolf offers free golf club rental.
The Fort Worth location can be seen from the conference hotels, and will be brand new, opening its doors this summer. Find out more information about TopGolf here.

Commercial members, submit your innovation for recognition! It's easy and only has 3 requirements:

1) Be a commercial member of STMA who is exhibiting at STMA's Annual Conference
2) Have introduced an innovative product, service or piece of equipment within 2 years of exhibiting
3) Fill out the short, online application, which can be found here.

Winners receive recognition at the STMA Annual Awards Banquet, in the trade show hall, in press releases. They also receive a trophy and have use of STMA's Innovative logo for promoting the winning innovation.

See the full program requirements here. The deadline to submit is Oct. 15. See a list of previous winners.

In 2010 STMA Membership Committee implemented a program to honor STMA members for their years of service to the association. Thus, began the Membership Pin program. STMA awards 5-, 10-, 15-, 20- and 25-year pins for corresponding years of membership.

Hitting one of those milestones this year? Look for your pin this month. Uncertain when you joined STMA? Check your membership record here. If your join date is not correct, or if you lost your pin, please call STMA Headquarters at 800-323-3875.

SportsTurf Management magazine's June issue will list all of those with a milestone anniversary in 2017.

The 2-Minute Tip for Success

STMA's Job Board is one of the most active pages on our website. Learn how to use job boards effectively to land the perfect job for you here.

Turf Rundown

Experts from The Center for Applied Biomechanics at The University of Virginia are studying game-day player impacts with crash-test dummies. The work aims to understand more about how head injuries happen on the football field, and use what's learned to catalyze the design of better protective equipment in the future. Click here to learn how the NFL is supporting research and innovation to improve safety in sports.

International Resources