Grace College and Seminary’s grounds team recently received the Green Star Honor Award from the Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS). The award, which recognizes excellence in grounds management, was presented to Jeff Buriff, Grace College grounds supervisor, at the PGMS national convention in Louisville, Ky., on October 21. “It was a huge honor to receive this award. It has put Grace College on the national stage in the landscape world,” Buriff said.
PGMS is the nation’s largest grounds management society, recognized for its leadership and educational resources. Annual Green Star Awards recognize superior landscaping and grounds management in a variety of sectors including colleges and universities. Grace College and Seminary was one of six recipients of its kind to receive the Green Star Honor Award this year.
“I am so pleased that the grounds team received this recognition,” said Dr. Bill Katip, president of Grace College & Seminary. “I consistently hear complimentary remarks from visitors about the quality of our campus grounds, and that is a testament to our high caliber team.”
“The honor award is evidence of our continued efforts to improve and beautify our campus and sports turf,” said Randy Kleinhans, director of the physical plant at Grace College. “Our aim is to provide an environment where students, faculty, staff and the public can enjoy excellent professional landscaping.”
Based in Winona Lake, Ind., Grace’s grounds team has sought professional development and continual improvement in recent years. Training seminars in landscape and sports turf management conducted by Purdue University have proved beneficial, as well as visiting other campuses. “In addition to training, we have visited peer schools to learn new ideas and best practices. We are striving to be the best in class for our size school,” Kleinhans added.