As the Spring semester comes to a close, most students are getting their things together for the big move back home for the summer or off to their new careers after they graduate.
However, a large portion of students will be staying here in Huntsville for summer school or to continue working.
For those staying behind, Ravens Nest Golf Course serves as the perfect summer activity, as well as a testimony to benefits of joining with Sam Houston State University.
Raven’s Nest Golf Course has been owned and operated by the university since September 1, 2005 after its purchase from the city of Huntsville.
As a result, SHSU students can play for a fraction of what it costs the public.
The primary reason for the purchase of the course was to facilitate the recently developed Professional Golf Management program at SHSU. The program, started in Fall 2005, currently has 42 students.
Richard Ballinger, the head of the PGM program, attributes much of the increased business at Ravens Nest to its sale to the university.
“I’m proud to say that 25 percent of its business is from Sam Houston students.” Ballinger said of the course.
Since the university took over, a membership program has been implemented, a grill was built in the club house and a large marquee sign was installed along Interstate 45.
For students interested in the PGM program, the requirements are to have a 12 handicap or better and be a registered student at SHSU. In addition, there is a $300 fee per semester that allows the student unlimited use at the Ravens Nest course and driving range.
There are currently only 17 schools in the country that have a PGM program, making Sam Houston State an attractive option for those in the area that are interested in golf course management.
However, a student does not need to have any affiliation with the program to reap its benefits. Any student with a valid SHSU ID card can play 18 holes for only $7. To rent a cart is extra, but still much cheaper than the normal fee.
The value is exceptional considering the “Dallas Morning News” ranked Ravens Nest No. 6 for best value in the state of Texas last year.
The course itself is beautiful and offers a full 18 holes, lessons, a driving range and a
complete pro shop.
Ravens Nest golf course is located along the southbound side of I-45, just north of Huntsville Memorial Hospital.