SOUTHPORT, N.C.– Ferris State University Professional Golf Management alumnus Barry Walters was selected to Golf Digest magazine’s prestigious “Best Teachers State by State 2013-14” list.
Walters, 57, is one of just 13 North Carolina PGA professionals on the list, which was selected by a panel of more than 1,200 teaching pros nationwide. Walters is head golf professional at The Reserve Club at St. James Plantation, a 6,000-acre retirement and second home community in North Carolina. He has served as the community’s lead golf instructor since 2000.
Prior to joining the St. James staff, Walters was an instructor with the Colbert-Ballard Golf Learning Centers, founded by PGA touring pro Jim Colbert and legendary instructor Jimmy Ballard in 1994. He developed the CBGLC instructor certification program that is accredited by the PGA of America, and was ultimately promoted to director of instruction for CBGLC.
Walters developed a passion for teaching the game while at Ferris, where he majored in the PGM and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Marketing in 1980. He began his teaching career under the tutelage of well-known teaching pros Bill Straussbaugh, Gary Wiren and Ballard.
“Golf Digest got the right man,” said Dave Kjome, director of golf at The Clubs of St. James Plantation. “I don’t know anyone who works harder or who knows more about the golf swing than he does. He’s helped literally hundreds of our members improve their swings, lower their scores and get more enjoyment out of the game.”
Walters said that the key to his teaching is to give students the ability to self-diagnose and self-correct their own individual swing. He helps students understand how a club’s path and face angle affect the flight of a golf shot. From there, they only have to be mindful of three basic fundamentals to correct poor shot-making even while on the course.
“I use a hands-on approach to build a relationship with my students to produce positive results,” he said. “We start with a solid understanding of the set-up fundamentals and golf’s Master fundamental ‘connection’ and then we progress to developing a swing that they can consistently repeat.”
Ferris’ PGM program was established in 1975. The program is a joint venture with the Professional Golfers Association of America and is designed for students who are interested in a career in the golf industry as a PGA member. Students enrolled in PGM earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Business, from Ferris, and experience credits toward PGA membership. To learn more about PGM, visit here.