Swinging Across Borders: Reflections on Heidi Hesse’s Internship Journey with the Louisiana Golf Association

Lafayette, LA – August 31, 2023

As my internship with the Louisiana Golf Association comes to a close, I find myself reflecting on a multitude of enriching experiences and valuable lessons.

Arriving in Louisiana, I was initially unfamiliar with the vibrant Cajun culture that defines this region. Living near the bayous and immersing myself in local delights like crawfish and gumbo, I was pleasantly surprised by the piquant flavors that characterize the cuisine. This newfound understanding also shed light on the origin of Tabasco from this area.

Professionally, my time here has been exceptionally rewarding and I am grateful to Logan Ray for immersing me in the golf industry. I had the world of golf administration opened up before me, and I seized the opportunity to acquire a diverse set of skills. Handling tasks such as managing phone calls and emails, assisting individuals with various concerns, and facilitating new member registrations through the GHIN admin portal became my second nature. Additionally, I honed my abilities in data management. A highlight of my internship was delving into golf event management and championships. Collaborating with Jacob Oaks, I participated in course marking prior to tournaments and gained insights into the operational intricacies of hosting/managing a successful golf event.

Accompanying Assistant Executive Director, Kyle Nagdeman, on course rating ventures provided me with a comprehensive understanding of the meticulous process involved in evaluating golf courses. From a marketing and communication perspective, I not only conceptualized creative content ideas but also adeptly utilized tools to craft engaging materials. Collaborating with my partner, USGA Boatwright Intern, Maili Bartz, we developed consistent and visually appealing graphics that demonstrated our autonomy and reliability. My exposure to tools like HubSpot proved invaluable for enhancing my professional toolkit. Additionally, I dedicated time to refining my skills in Photoshop, Lightroom, and video editing, allowing me to create compelling visual content.

Participating in Board meetings offered me a platform to contribute my thoughts and collaborate on strategies aimed at advancing the association’s goals. Playing a pivotal role in securing sponsorships, I successfully negotiated a partnership with Louisiana Red River Bank to sponsor our leaderboard this year.

Above all, this internship has deepened my understanding of golf, encompassing its rules, industry, and culture. Armed with this newfound knowledge, I look forward to embracing the sport more fervently and evolving my proficiency. The people I’ve had the privilege to meet have been remarkable. I am grateful for the unwavering support and guidance from the entire team, who generously answered my inquiries and shared their expertise. This internship has been an incredible journey, leaving me enriched both personally and professionally.

As I conclude my internship, I am also on the brink of graduation, eagerly anticipating the next chapter of my professional life. My time with the Louisiana Golf Association has equipped me with a wealth of skills and knowledge, and I am now poised to seek a new job opportunity that harmonizes with my international sports background and fuels my evolving passions. I am excited to embark on this next adventure, ready to contribute my unique experiences and drive to a new team, all while continuing to nurture my fervor for the sports industry.

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