NEW FOR 2019 ~ 

The Vermont Junior Golf Academy features a holistic player development program for 5-year-old beginners through players aspiring to compete in college. Students learn the game by playing on the golf course with their peers in a fun, safe and interactive environment. Boys and girls programs are both part of the program, and the VJGA will be home to “Girl’s Golf”, an initiative co-sponsored by the LPGA to bring more girls and young women into the sport. At VJGA our priority is instilling a love of golf, and with that an appreciation for friendly competition and good sportsmanship. Students meet new friends, develop individual and team skills and learn valuable life skills and core values. Sessions focus on individual achievement in a team environment, featuring extremely low coach-to-student ratios. And we offer more than golf lessons; our focus is also on parents and families, through our Junior “Tour”, family events and educational workshops. We take pride in outlining a clear path to your child’s development and showing how they can become champions in golf & life.

For Information on the Vermont Junior Golf Academy, please contact Jay Cooke, Director of Instruction at or 802-279-9889
For Information on the Summer Golf Camps please contact Dan Ruane, PGA, Head Professional at

The Vermont Junior Golf Academy’s mission is to enroll interested juniors regardless of their family’s ability to pay. For those interested in financial aid, we ask that a brief letter be submitted explaining why the program would be a good fit and how financial aid would help the family. Aid will be determined based on two criteria; first, the family's economic situation, and second, the player's previous achievements and future potential. Our Trustees will review the letters and respond with what scholarship funds might be offered.

Country Club of Vermont is pleased to be the first Club in Vermont to host Girls Golf programs in conjunction with the LPGA and the USGA. This groundbreaking program is designed to introduce girls to the game of golf while teaching them life long skills and empowerment. 

Comprehensive Junior Development for players 5-18

Open to children who are part of a family membership, or for players who choose to join the club as a Junior member. See below for information regarding financial aid both for families who can demonstrate need (Golferships) as well as players who have shown great promise in golf and academics. Our mission is to do everything possible to include any junior who wishes to enroll.

VJGA Summer Camps:
Introduction to Golf: for ages 5-12.
o 5 day traditional summer camps.
o July 9-12, July 29 - August 1, Aug. 12-15, from 9-1 p.m.
o $ 200 members, $ 225 non-members

Comprehensive Junior Development for players 5-18

With the exception of CCVT Weekly Camps, VJGA programs are open to juniors who are part of a CCVT family membership, or for players who choose to join the club as a Junior Member. (See below for information regarding membership and financial aid. )

Path To Champions On-Course Coaching
On course, weekly junior development. Step-by-step individual development in a team environment. The weekly format allows for coaching to be followed by practice opportunities between sessions. (Although every attempt is made to pair students by age as well as experience, students are accepted primarily on the basis of maturity and ability. As students improve, they can move to higher levels.)
o Ages 7-18
o Student to coach ratio: Max. 4-1.
o 8 hours coaching/month and up to 4 hours weekly supervised practice (included but optional)
o $ 250/month for three months (one or two month rates available on request.)

Junior “Tour” Events: Monthly Tournaments with parent caddies.
o One Sunday afternoon monthly: May 26, June 30, July 28, Aug. 11.
o Play starts from tees 100 yards from the green, 9 holes. Total score determines to what level players advance. As players advance, so do tee distances.
o $ 75/event includes carts, awards and snacks following

Elite Coaching
For those interested in more coaching and practice each week, or those pursuing high school golf or beyond. (Although every attempt is made to pair students by age as well as experience, students are accepted primarily on the basis of maturity and ability. As students improve, they move to higher levels.)
Starting May 6 and continue through Oct 10+- (state tournament)
Ages 12-18
Student to coach ratio: Max 4:1
16 hours coaching per month and up to 4 hours weekly supervised practice (included but optional)
$ 450/month for three months. (one or two month rates available on request)

Membership and Financial Aid
o With the exception of “CCVT Summer Camps Participants”, enrollees in the VJGA must be members of CCVT. Membership options: (1) being included as part of a family membership, or (2) purchasing a stand-alone junior membership.
o Junior membership fee is $ 650.00; membership information can be obtained by contacting David Bennett, CCVT General Manager and Director of Golf: 802-825-7051

Financial Aid
The VJGA’s mission is to help enroll juniors regardless of age, gender, experience or their family’s ability to pay. Limited financial aid is available to qualified applicants. Contact David Bennett with questions about financial aid.
To qualify for financial aid, we ask that a brief letter be submitted by parents explaining why the program would be a good fit for their junior and how financial aid would help make enrolling in the program a possibility. (In some cases, financial aid could be provided to those juniors willing to participate in an age-appropriate work-study program; please indicate the family’s willingness to consider that option in an aid package.)
Financial Aid will be determined based on two criteria; first, the family’s economic situation, and second, the player's previous achievements and future potential. Our Trustees will review the letters and respond with what funds might be offered.
Contact David Bennett with questions about financial aid. 802-825-7051

The VJGA Improvement System
Our system was created to give both juniors and their parents an affordable, structured and predictable path forward. Starting with the “Hat System”, our program focuses on learning one part of the game at a time—and always one that students can master at their ages and strength levels.
The most critical part of golf is the “short game”--those shots and putts that occur close to or on the greens. With that in mind, most of our players start at the “White Hat Level”, which is based on scoring from 100 yards from the green. Although younger players are unable to hit the ball 250 yards, they can play to that equivalent level in their chipping, pitching and putting. (Players with significant playing experience may be exempted from the Hat System if they are already prepared for advanced coaching.) Students progress from White hat level through Yellow, Orange, Red and Blue levels before continuing to Advanced Junior Coaching, Path to High School and Path To Champions college prep. At each step they learn only the skills they need to get to the next level, so the coaching is never overwhelming or technically complicated.This progression leads to improvement, constant successes, mastery and confidence. If we want our juniors to love the game for a lifetime, we can’t insist that they start by playing the “whole” golf course. Just as would happen if a beginner skier started on terrain that’s too difficult, frustration and discouragement would follow the overwhelmed junior golfer and the chances are good that we would lose her as a player.

The Junior Development Tour
In most sports even the youngest of players participate in matches, games and scrimmages from the very beginning. Unfortunately, golf traditionally has been set up so that only “experienced” or “good golfers” play in tournaments or events on the golf course. Many of today’s junior programs take place on a driving range—an area that bears little resemblance to the real course; by contrast, tennis occurs on the court, basketball on the court, etc. And when scrimmages or games are played, they are held on the same practice areas. For those reasons, in our “Hat System” structure, players learn to play and practice the game on the golf course. Then they play low-pressure, fun events and use their scores to identify advancement to successively higher levels. These events allow competition with friends made during weekly sessions and clearly identify what is needed to reach the next level.  As students improve, they gradually play from increasingly longer tees, eventually playing “the whole course” from a length commensurate with their skill levels. By this time players have learned, step-by-step, the three pillars golf: fundamentally sound golf swings, effective on-course strategies, and emotional self-management.

Advanced On-Course Coaching- Path To High School and Path To Champions. What is On-Course Coaching?

The game is played on a course, not on a practice area, so we get students onto the course to simulate changing conditions (side hill lies, bunkers, hitting over water, etc). Learning in the real environment helps build skills that can be applied anywhere they want to play. Once on the course we set up games, matches and benchmarks to help students understand the keys to scoring and basics of course management. Our players fill out custom VJGA scoring system scorecards, the results of which help create practice plans for the next training session. Traditional instruction doesn’t typically focus on purposeful practice, but we do. In fact we supervise practice sessions and teach students how to relate performance on the course to what is needed for continuing improvement in training sessions. Focused practice leads to better golf, and students eventually look forward to designing and implementing their own practice sessions.

Why Coaching vs Private Lessons?
The coaching philosophy is based on the student becoming more independent after each session as they learn the 4 key areas of the game: (1). the mindset and mental focus for golf, (2) how to score and make strategic decisions on the course, (3) how to analyze their results and create a practice routine that promotes long term development, and (4) motor skill development which builds solid swing fundamentals and predictable control of the golf ball.  In coaching, students are individuals in team environments. Each of our juniors is taught skills and techniques based on his or her strength & mobility, learning style, and desired outcome. The team environment is productive for several key reasons;

1. It creates the right environment to learn life skills and core values.
2. It allows your juniors to build friendships in an individual sport
3. It allows coaches to create competition and challenges that motivate the players
4. It enables your child to take leadership or mentoring roles to develop interpersonal skills
5. Its increases the hours your child can spend with their coach while not increasing the expense
6. Its reduces the chances of over-teaching & technical overload; students are encouraged to apply what they learn by experimentation rather than just being told what to do

What do high school and college programs look for in a player?
At VJGA we take pride in developing players that make any future team a better one. Our students learn solid core values and a personal confidence that help them succeed in high school and beyond. As juniors progress, coaches look more and more for self-sufficient, well-rounded individuals, not just how good a swing might be. Golfers that make positive impacts share important characteristics: confident in her ability and willingness to learn, understands team dynamics, controls his swing and emotions, can create his own improvement plans, is dedicated to purposeful practice and leads by example. If your junior is considering playing at any level in college, he needs to understand that the coaching staff will assume all these personal attributes are already built in. The coach is not there to fix swings or tell students how to play. He expects students have their own coaches at home and that those values are already in place. College coaches are mentors who help players contribute to the team, manage travelling and school work and assure a successful path to graduation. So it’s easy to see that high school and college golf share one thing in common—successful players typically come from high quality junior programs where solid preparation, good golf and solid life skills make all the difference.