CODE OF ETHICS
As a NZGTF Member, you must fulfill the obligations of being an upstanding citizen and role model to your students, your community, and to the golf teaching profession. In order to fulfill the NZGTF’s purpose and maintain membership status, the organization requires strict adherence to the following Code of Ethics:
Article 1 – Being a member shall be synonymous with the finest aspects of the game of golf; namely, to show integrity, honour and respect at all times to those who have placed their trust in you and your professional ability. Professional integrity, whether it be toward a fellow teaching professional or client, is beneficial for all concerned.
Article 2 – The public has the right to expect the best, most up-to-date and uniform instruction available; therefore, it is the duty of each member to continue to learn any new techniques or modifications in order to pass them along to those who take instructions.
Article 3 – Only members in good standing maintain the right to identify themselves as NZGTF members.
Article 4 – No member shall sponsor or promote any equipment which has not been personally tested and proved to be of high quality. Supporting commercial enterprises for monetary gain only, rather than from a sense of conviction as well, shall misrepresent the equipment to the public, thereby jeopardizing the integrity of the game and the NZGTF. Furthermore, any equipment derived from our industry partners under a personal use program are not designed for resale to the general public so that the teaching professional can profit from this transaction. Failure to respect these guidelines jeopardizes all members’ use of these programs.
Article 5 – The NZGTF, USGTF as well as all WGTF member nations are membership organizations that constantly strive to provide membership benefits. Therefore, members must meet professional financial obligations promptly and conduct all business dealings in a manner befitting the standards of the NZGTF. (Annual membership fees are $215NZ$)
Article 6 – Members are often in the public eye; therefore, it is essential to present true sportsmanlike conduct and good behaviour, so as not to cause embarrassment to any professional, student or person in charge of operating a golf facility.
Article 7 – As golf is a game enjoyed by many in their formative years, Members have a responsibility to the youth of this country by setting an example of professionalism for them to follow.
Article 8 – Any NZGTF member who:
Fails to act in accordance with the NZGTF Code of Ethics
Takes undue advantage of other NZGTF members
Acts in any manner that is not in the best interest in the NZGTF
will lose their right to promote themselves as an NZGTF or WGTF member.
The NZGTF was established in New Zealand by Gary Schott. Gary has a long standing friendship with Geoff Bryant, the president of the United States Golf Teachers Federation (USGTF). It was through this friendship Gary realised the extent of success the USGTF has had in the U.S. When presented with the opportunity to offer the same services in New Zealand, Gary accepted with no hesitation. If it works in the U.S, then this new concept of teaching will help so many live their dreams and drive the golf industry in New Zealand. The USGTF is the largest national organization of certified golf teaching professionals in the world and is a founding member of the World Golf Teachers Federation® and is one of 42 member nations that make up this entity. Both federations help to establish the world’s standard for golf teaching professionals.
THE HISTORY OF THE USGTF & WGTF
(& THE FUTURE OF NZGTF)
They said it couldn’t be done—-training and certifying golf teaching professionals. That was the exclusive terrain of the PGA of America, established in 1916. How could any other organization dare challenge tradition and compete head to head with such a Goliath of the golf industry? Furthermore, how did this entity become the largest organization of golf teaching professionals in the world?
For the answer to these questions, Geoff Bryant, president of the United States Golf Teachers Federation has the answers. According to Mr. Bryant, “As a USGTF member it is important to understand the history and evolution of the organization and what prompted its founding. Our story is about taking the golf teaching profession and for the first time in history making it a separate entity unto itself. It is about providing opportunity, offering inclusion and demystifying the golf teaching profession. Having a history is what sets us apart and our story has proven ever relevant to over 25,000 golf teaching professionals around the world.” Mr. Bryant knew twenty years ago there was a market for personable, qualified golf teaching professionals. Bryant, a former ski racer and teacher, knew that some of the best ski instructors in the world attended six-day certification courses. If it worked so well for skiing, Bryant was sure it would work for golf. He was right.
Prior to the existence of the USGTF, candidates with a desire to teach golf had to attend a three to four year apprenticeship program governed by the PGA. Ironically, these individuals did very little teaching. That’s still the case today. Most apprentices work for minimum wage and spend most of their time selling merchandise, cleaning clubs, or taking charge of tee times.
Most USGTF members are entrepreneurs, well educated, and successful in other areas of life. What’s more, they all love to teach golf. Because of their experiences from various walks of life, USGTF members find employment or create their own. They occupy all aspects of the golf teaching industry from head professionals at private and public golf courses, to those working at driving ranges, golf schools, indoor facilities, high schools, colleges and private teaching enterprises.
World Golf Teachers Federation
But the story does not end there. There’s a global twist to all of this. In 1989, Bryant noticed an incredible number of foreigners traveling here to the United States to get certified. Their sentiments were always the same: they wanted to teach, not work as apprentices. Their own countries were not established to provide certification. Hence, the birth of the “World Golf Teachers Federation.” Established in 1991, the WGTF is now the world’s largest organization of golf teaching professionals. Because of help initially from USGTF examiners, all member nations are now conducting their own golf teaching certification courses.
One Universal Umbrella
According to Bryant, “It’s simply a matter of history repeating itself. In the 1960’s and early 70’s, all ski resorts in this country hired Austrian and Swiss instructors. Similarly, tennis resorts hired Australian teachers. With the advent and growth of those teaching federations in our own country, these sports now depend mostly on United States citizens. Additionally, teaching professionals prefer to belong to an organization that represents their own country. The great thing about the World Golf Teachers Federation is that it ties us all together under one universal umbrella, so that we can benefit from interacting and sharing ideas with one another.”
“All member nation federations adhere to the WGTF charter of bylaws, that has established a standard of uniformity and quality of golf instruction throughout the world. These bylaws were established to protect the rights of teaching professionals, and to provide certain obligations and benefits to each member nation. Furthermore, the WGTF is responsible for administering the biennial World Golf Teachers Cup. This is a six-day event held alternately in the United States and abroad. It brings together golf teaching professionals from all over the world, plus provides the opportunity to compete, exchange ideas, and foster life-long friendships.”
An Organization of Inclusion
“While we are on the subject of the WGTF, I might add that our organization has always been diverse in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, and age. From the very beginning, the USGTF has been an organization of inclusion. This is one of our strengths that has had far reaching implications as we continue to grow worldwide.”
“We are very proud for instance of USGTF members such as the late Julius Richardson, the first African American to be officially designated by Golf Magazine as one of the top 100 teaching professionals in the United States. By 81, Mr. Richardson continued to teach six hours per day year round, with a lesson agenda booked well in advance. He thanked the USGTF repeatedly for recognizing his lifelong accomplishments as a golf teaching professional and giving him the opportunity to belong to an organization of his peers. Unfortunately, this opportunity never presented itself to Julius in his younger years, simply because of the color of his skin. He has had an impact on the game that will be remembered indefinately.
Benefits include member liability insurance, group life insurance, ongoing refresher courses, a Level IV Masters certification course, educational and marketing material, and discounts on equipment with key golf manufacturing companies. Also of noteworthy interest: the annual United States Golf Teachers Cup, the biennial World Golf Teachers Cup and the World Golf Teachers Tour are extremely popular events among USGTF members.