For Immediate Release
The Country Club Establishes Lee Elder Internship for 2022 U.S. Open
Weeklong initiative, in partnership with the USGA, designed to expose underrepresented individuals to the game and the many career pathways within the $84 billion golf industry
BROOKLINE, Mass. (Nov. 17, 2021) - The Country Club, in partnership with the United States Golf Association, today announced the establishment of the Lee Elder Internship, a one-week immersive experience at the 2022 U.S. Open at The Country Club. Applications can be submitted immediately at tcc1882.org/leeelderinternship.
Named for one of golf ’s true trailblazers, the innovative program is designed to introduce under-represented youth to the game and its core values, while also showcasing golf ’s many career pathways. Over the course of a week, 25 individuals will be exposed to multiple facets of the business of golf and gain firsthand experience and insight from industry leaders. The daily curriculum will cover tournament operations, media, course maintenance and design, sales and marketing, facility operations and management, and other relevant topics.
There are more than two million jobs within the $84 billion golf industry, but only a small fraction of these are held by those from underrepresented communities. The mission of this foundational program is to help address this imbalance. It is the latest in a series of proactive programs in golf to encourage people from diverse communities to participate in golf and explore the many career opportunities in the game.
“Diversity remains one of the major challenges facing the golf industry, one that can only be addressed with continued emphasis and initiatives to reach underrepresented individuals,” said Will Fulton, General Chair for the 2022 U.S. Open, which will be played June 13-19. “This program is designed to play a role in this ecosystem by reaching new audiences at formative times, providing them with information and establishing relationships with golf leaders. It ’s a model we have every expectation can be replicated in the future.”
The Country Club and the USGA will cover the program ’s costs, including travel expenses and accommodations for all interns. The membership of The Country Club and the USGA plan to leverage the worldwide exposure and incredible learning experience of the U.S. Open Championship to open conversations and opportunities for more people in the game.
Elder was a pioneer in integrating golf and laying the groundwork for generations that followed. He was the first African American golfer to play in The Masters and the first to play on a United States Ryder Cup team. In 2019, he became the first African American to receive the USGA ’s Bob Jones Award, the association ’s highest honor recognizes an individual who demonstrates Jones ’s exemplary spirit, character and respect for the game
“I have always worked hard to help underprivileged kids have greater opportunities in life,” Elder said. “I am honored to be associated with this important new program, one that will provide several exceptional opportunities for minority representation in the game of golf.”
About The Country Club
Founded in 1882 and located in Brookline, Mass., The Country Club is one of the oldest clubs in the United States. It was one of five charter clubs that founded the United States Golf Association. It has played host to a number of significant events in its history, including 16 USGA championships, the 1913 U.S. Open won by amateur Francis Ouimet, and the U.S. team ’s comeback win at the 1999 Ryder Cup. The fourth U.S. Open at The Country Club will be played June 13-19, 2022. For more information, visit tcc1882.org.
About the USGA
The USGA is a nonprofit organization that celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf ’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women ’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment, handicapping and amateur status rules. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association ’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum and Library, where we honor the game by curating the world ’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.
Todd Graff, CTP Boston for The Country Club
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