How did you get into golf and what made you enrol into the BSI PGA Diploma?
A. At a young age my dad and I would play golf together but as I got older, I lost interest in the game and decided to explore other options. Only at around 17 years old, did I get back into the game and start to really enjoy it, as that was when my family moved to the Eye of Africa Golf Estate. My parents wanted to give me the option to play golf with them instead of sitting alone at home on Saturday mornings, so I decided to give it a try again. I fell in love with the game all over again.
When it was time to decide on my future, I had no idea what to do, all I knew was, I really enjoyed playing golf. After a lot of research, we came across Balderstone Sports Institute and decided to give it a shot. My family and I decided to go to two Open Days to make sure this is what I wanted, and before I knew it, there I was standing on Huddle Parks premises starting Day 1
Who has been your biggest influence with regards to golf?
A. When it was time to decide on my future, I had no idea what to do, all I knew was, I really enjoyed playing golf. After a lot of research, we came across Balderstone Sports Institute and decided to give it a shot. My family and I decided to go to two Open Days to make sure this is what I wanted, and before I knew it, there I was standing on Huddle Parks premises starting Day 1
What was your most memorable moments/ highlights during your three years in the PGA Diploma?
A. My initial memory was on the first day of me arriving at BSI. I was the only girl in my class and felt a little intimidated, but realised over time, that this was where I belonged and started to feel comfortable amongst my male peers, and today can call my fellow graduates, Family. My highlights would have been to play against the coaches during our last days of the diploma, in the 3rd Years vs Staff match, and the other is the BSI Team Challenge (1st vs 2nd vs 3rd Years and our Junior Academy), and the fact that us Final years really had zero luck, as we did not win one point.
Despite the loss, me making new friends and new memories with everyone at the Academy has been incredible.
So, I can honestly say that through golf, I have been able to meet new people every single day and this has opened up many opportunities in my life. Understanding and getting to know all the various career path ways in the ‘Business World of Golf’ has really helped me set my future plans.
You completed your PGA Diploma and continued with your studies, enrolling into the BSI Greenkeeping/ Turf Management course, what made you decide to take on the Greenkeeping course?
Being a female in this male dominant industry I wanted to set myself apart from everyone else. Every day I look at a golf course through my untrained eyes, and I always wanted to know the details and intricacies within the management of a golf course. I wanted to learn and be part of the entire industry and identify the small details, from the moment you drive into golf club to sinking the last putt on the 18th green, I want to be the person that makes it a special place for people to come play and enjoy the game of golf.
How have things been going doing your practical hours at Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Course?
Really awesome. On the Greenkeeping side, I get to work in bright open spaces and use machinery that enables and can transform an area of what we think is boring grass to a multi-million dollar playground for so many people to enjoy (except when they are in the rough). I’m learning a lot from the Greenkeeping staff and I am truly grateful to BSI Greenkeeping graduate and Course Manager at Royal J&K, Jerry Steyn, for imparting all his knowledge.
I am also getting some experience with Chris Bentley, CEO of Royal J&K, as he has also given me the opportunity to shadow him and see how one manages one of the top golf clubs in Africa.
What will be doing after you qualify as a Greenkeeper?
A. I will be leaving to America in September 2023, and will be working at Frenchman’s Creek Beach & Country Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, USA. Frenchman’s Creek is a luxury residential country club community, and whilst I work there will further my learning in customer service at the highest of industry levels.
When I joined the Academy, I was the only girl in my class and it terrified me, but every day that went past I realised that we all equal no matter if someone hits the ball further than you, you can still finish the game in the same amount of shots or even less. The opportunities given to each and every one is the same. You are on par with everyone!
If you had to give a 17-year old Sammy advice from what you have experienced in this past 4 years, what would it be?
• Don’t do your assignments the night before.
• Always step out of your comfort zones.
• Do not let people decide your future.
• Have confidence in every little thing you do even if you have no clue what you are doing.