HOLLISTER, Mo. – Big Cedar Lodge, in partnership with the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), brought eighth-grade science students to one of the country’s premier golf resorts to learn more about STEM through the First Green program.

Todd Bohn is Big Cedar Lodge’s director of agronomy and is responsible for keeping the great outdoors in pristine condition. He was excited to share his career with middle school students from the School of the Ozarks.

“You have a little fun with them. You get to experience, show them the game of golf and bring them to a great place like the 19th hole at Payne’s Valley that some of them may never get to see,” said Bohn. “To see their faces and just explain kind of everything that goes into maintaining a golf course. We teach them the fundamentals. We have a math component, a soil component, some wildlife management, and some fun things that we are planning to teach them through the day.”

Students like Briggs Wilhoit got to collect and research soil deposits, learn about different technologies used to maintain golf courses and met some of the local wildlife with assistants from Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium.

“It was so fun learning how all the math and stuff goes into keeping a golf course,” said Wilhoit. “Yeah, I learned a lot.”

Dr. Brian Polk is the associate professor of science for the School of the Ozarks and wants his students to know how important STEM is for multiple careers.

“I think they get to see that science exists on a broader stage,” said Dr. Polk. “Typically, when we teach science, we do one thing at a time. We’re doing Newton’s Law or simple machines, but you come here, and you see how all the biology, the agronomy, the physics, the chemistry. It all fits together.”