Working at a golf club is the best summer job for college students

if you can handle the ‘work hard, play hard’ lifestyle

The whole point of going to college is to get an education so you can enter a profession that you enjoy, right? Unless you had crazy controlling parents, and in that case I am so sorry. Well, you don’t have to wait until you have that degree to find a job that doesn’t kill you a little bit inside every time you walk through the door.

Finding a job that isn’t terrible while you’re in school seems impossible, but I have hit the jackpot.

I am going into my fourth summer as a server/ bartender at a golf club, and it just keeps getting better and better. If you need a summer job or have a terrible one now, get in your car and go apply because it’s the best.

It’s seasonal

You’re not missing out on much money while you’re in school even though there are year round employees. Summers are absolutely insane with golf outings, weddings, and general fine dining that you’ll be working as much as you want to. During winter break you have corporate Christmas parties to keep you busy and make some money before Spring semester.

You get to be outside in some of the most beautiful scenery in town

Your friends may be going back to the local ice cream shoppe where they will be stuck in a small space all day speaking to people through a window, but not at a golf club. I get to be outside for a lot of my shifts whether it is bartending on the golf course during an outing or passing hors d’oeuvres on the patio. You also get some free time to take joy rides around the beautiful golf course after your shifts which is a major bonus at sunset.

The late nights and long days teach you work ethic you didn’t know you had

You may have to wake up at 3:30am to get to the club by 5am to set up breakfast for a golf outing. Sometimes you have to stay for the whole outing which includes dinner, and by the time you leave it can even be close to midnight. Certain events cause for setting up after dinner service until 4am, and it can be very hard to get used to. As a college student, my sleep schedule is already completely screwed, so I have just accepted that this is how it’s gonna be until I graduate. People may complain that they’re tired or had to miss a party, but just think about how you’re building character and escaping the office setting for at least one more year.

You make hella good money compared to your friends

No minimum wage here. If you’re a good worker, they notice you and that recognition turns into major cash money. Some people don’t understand how you still have to tip even though it’s a club because every club is different, but trust me even without it you’re making more than your friends.

You become a family because of those long hours

If you don’t like the people you work with then that is a major issue and basically determines whether your summer will be a success or a major flop. Spending almost 3 days straight with a group of people for an invitational gives you the time for a lot of inside jokes and pranking to lighten things up. Since a lot of the workers are college students, you kind of just get each other right off the bat. The workers that aren’t college students are even more interesting because they are real people, and you can learn a lot from bullshitting with them for a few hours.

Also, it is important to have that “after work bar” to grab a few beers together because you can’t go out in public with anyone else as the disheveled mess of a human you are when you leave the golf club.

I am a very easy target for the easy pranks.

You get to experience events you never imagined

I have gotten to work some events where famous athletes were everywhere and some of the items being sold in the auction cost more than my mother’s house. One time there was a picture of Frank Sinatra playing pool with a bunch of famous people and in the bottom part of the frame was his signature on a cocktail napkin- maybe it’s just me, but I was very excited to be able to stand next to it for 20 hours of my life. The member events are always very unique and interesting to work. They can be the best because everyone is there to have a good time and with the staff we have, that’s a guarantee.

You get the workout of a lifetime

Server muscles are known to be a thing, and they are very hard to get back after sitting in a library studying for the past 4 months. Working golf outings and all of these events require you to be fast and able to carry a ridiculous amount of weight. Within a month, the one arm I carry trays with will be similar to the what I imagine Hulk to look like as a blonde 21 year old and then my other arm will be embarrassingly wimpy.

With all of the lifting of tables, chairs, and coolers you do- it will even out eventually. I have actually been so sweaty from running up and down stairs that I looked at myself in the mirror and been a tad bit frightened by my own appearance which is never a good sign. Getting paid for a 10 hour cardio isn’t a bad deal though, so I can’t complain.

You get to network with professionals and get some business cards

This is the biggest perk to me. You are serving people who deserve to be waited on because they worked hard to build a company or climb the corporate ladder because they are good at what they do. These people have power, and if they notice you are a college student and a good worker- they will help you out with an internship or an entry position.

Learning to network is something that can’t be taught. You just have to be thrown into the situation to sink or swim. You never know if that man you brought out a transfusion to before he even asked for a refill is the CEO of a major company, and you might just get that business card. This is even more incentive to work your ass off the whole time you’re there, besides the fact that you’re at work so you should be working no matter what.

Your manners will be on point 

I learned how “thank you,” “please,” and “you’re welcome” is not the trinity of politeness. It goes way beyond those easy cop outs we use because we were told to by our parents when we were young. Manners are extremely important in the workplace and at the golf club, the guests won’t settle for anything less than impeccable manners. This little bit of skill has helped me in a lot of situations with professors, so keep these lessons with you even out of the clubhouse.

You are trained to be able to have a sophisticated conversation

I could not be thankful enough to have acquired this skill, and I notice my vocabulary in normal conversation being above par. If you want to form a bond with the members, then you have to know current events, random facts, regurgitate something you learned in class, and carry yourself like you know what the hell you’re doing with life. Life is full of surprises, so being able to talk to business professionals using their own language gives you some crazy bonus points.

Weddings, lots of weddings, and you will get some great ideas to plan your own

Weddings at a golf club are absolutely incredible, and I would be lying if I said I haven’t taken some mental notes of Pinterest-like ideas. I feel like I am a professional interior designer when I’m setting up a room for them. That’s someone’s wedding day, the most memorable and special day of their life, and the quality of your service dictates their memories. That’s a lot of pressure, and also extremely rewarding to experience that happiness and bliss.

Teamwork really does make the dream work

You can do things on your own, but I can assure you it will be a lot harder and done a lot worse than if you were working with others. Team projects in college are so frustrating, especially if you’re one of the pushovers like me that ends up doing the whole thing. Working at the golf club has proven to me that teamwork is where true success comes from, even if you’re working for the smallest company. It goes down to miniscule factors of how a room is set up for an event because when you’re alone, you can’t get the double cloth right because the corners won’t correspond perfectly without a partner. Trust me, I have tried and failed every time.

You learn from the best

This applies to everyone involved in a golf club, and you can learn something or take away the smallest lesson from literally anyone- good or bad. The managers are obviously killing it on all levels and that’s how they got to the position that they have. When they tell you something or teach you a new trick on how to be more efficient with your course timing, just listen because it’s not just to hear themselves speak.

You learn a lot from the members as well, and it usually is not intentional. You have to know how to handle every type of person, and that’s how life is in general so study up on patience and manners. There are also members that know what you’re going to school for and will have a conversation with you about it where you walk away feeling completely full of knowledge. They are not only connoisseurs of wine, but also their professions in the business world. I know this sounds extremely dorky, but it makes you a little excited to get back in the classroom so you can just go work for one of them already and use your brain. 

Working in the food industry is hard enough, and plenty of college kids do that as a way to live. A golf club is not only involving the food industry, but you get all of these perks and lessons that you didn’t sign up for, and you’ll walk away being so thankful to have. It’s extremely hard work, and I welcome the challenges to make each guests experience positive and memorable. Obviously the physical parts aren’t the best, and I have even taken a bath because I was so sore instead of sleeping prior my next shift before- compared to everything else, that’s still not a bad deal. I am so lucky to have found this perfect job for myself in my college career, and I would recommend it to anyone who has the kind of work ethic that can handle it.