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I thought I’d go to teacher’s college and become a math teacher. It was my parents that told me I shouldn’t go to school for something I’m good at, I should go to school for something I love. Georgian’s program appealed to me because I’d finish with a degree, transferable business skills, and a career in golf. I liked the relaxed environment, my peers, my instructors – and made great connections in the industry.
A guest speaker from St. George’s Golf and Country Club, host of the Canadian Open, hired me for my first internship. The next year, I worked at the Country Club of North Carolina. My boss there recommended me to Muirfield Village Golf Club for my final internship, where I was lucky enough to get hired on full-time after graduation. I was responsible for member and guest services; from our men’s locker room, to our security staff, to our fitness centre. I managed about 40 staff at peak season.
Working in this industry is all about taking care of members and their guests, and that’s what I love to do. Being at Muirfield every day was amazing. It’s a private club established by Jack Nicklaus and I had the privilege of interacting with many of golf’s greats. We hosted the annual Memorial Tournament, and the 2013 President’s Cup which had a phenomenal international presence. Muirfield Village is the first club in the world to host three of golf’s most prestigious international team competitions – the Presidents Cup, Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup.
My professors at Georgian really opened my eyes to what I could do with my career. Instead of setting my sights on running a small club close to home, I realized I could work at the best courses in the world.
Tom is now the general manager of Deer Ridge Golf Club in Kitchener. Deer Ridge is one of the top-ranked private golf clubs in Canada.