LU should be more forthcoming in course decision

Published 2:42 pm Thursday, July 7, 2016

Editor:

Longwood University needs to be more forthcoming in its explanations for why it closed its golf course to the public. So far those explanations have been contradictory, misleading and evasive.

Officials say that finances are not a consideration, yet they point to the figures about the course operating at a loss. But so do all of the university’s athletic programs, which, unlike the golf course, produce little or no revenue. Given the satisfaction the course gives its players, students and townspeople alike, this is money well-spent.

One point overlooked is Longwood’s contribution of $150,000 to the Manor. What do they hope to get for this expenditure? Apparently they are paying $60,000 for the two golf teams to play there, which, according to the golf coach, is far more than what they are paying now for that privilege.

What do they get for this increase? What of the other $90,000? This is a hefty sum to allow a few staff and students to play a more “professional” course when Longwood’s students are better served with the Longwood golf course than the more difficult and expensive Manor.

And why are they leaving a section of the old course available for classes and golf team members to practice on, requiring funds to maintain it without any revenue coming in?

The old course has admirably served the broad purposes of higher education, as well as providing athletic and social opportunities for the larger community, including the two high schools. And if there are future plans for the use of this property, why not keep the course open until those plans reach fruition?

Ronald L. Heinemann

Hampden Sydney