Turfgrass students benefit from Toro's financial and product support

September 16, 2008

University Park, Pa. -- Penn State's turfgrass science program has received a $40,000 grant from The Toro Co. to support student activities, along with product donations that include an aerator and other Toro equipment valued at about $25,000.

Toro's cash grant will help give student teams the opportunity to travel and compete in two major turfgrass events-the National Sports Managers Association Student Challenge, and the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America's Student Turf Bowl.

"Through its generous support, Toro recognizes that preparing for and attending these national events is an extremely important part of our students' education," said Andrew McNitt, associate professor of soil science. "Participating in the turfgrass industry's premier events encourages team-building and networking skills, and represents a defining moment in most students' professional development."

McNitt said the program aims to send a 16-student team to the upcoming events.

The aerator, Toro's new, innovative Pro Core 648, replaces one that was purchased in the 1980s and is no longer representative of designs commonly used in such applications as golf course and athletic field aeration. The new aerator will be used for demonstration and instructional purposes.

Headquartered in Bloomington, Minn., The Toro Co. is a worldwide provider of turf maintenance equipment and irrigation systems to help customers care for golf courses, sports fields, public green spaces, commercial and residential properties, and agricultural fields.

Penn State's turfgrass science program, initiated in 1929, is among the nation's oldest and most influential.

The connection between the University and the company dates back to the 1950s, when the turfgrass science program's first doctoral degree recipient, James Watson, began a long career at Toro that established him as a world-renowned leader in agronomy.   

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Last Updated November 18, 2010