I never thought much about boot fitting until the bulletin from a local two-year college arrived in my mailbox. This happens to be a fairly well known college in the area but I will refrain from mentioning it for fear of reprisals. I will say that it is located in a popular mountain ski resort area.
Being a business professor, I immediately opened the bulletin and looked for the business section. It was there in the table of contents along with the other expected curricular areas such as art, criminal justice, education, foreign language, math and humanities. I went to the business section because I teach management. I didn't really expect to see any management courses given that I had applied to teach a management course or two for the school a number of years ago and was told that they didn't offer management courses. They still don't offer any (at least not in the business section). I gave them the opportunity to offer management courses but they were not interested.
Their featured degreed academic program this year is Golf Club Management. I don't qualify to teach that and it was not in the business section of their bulletin. It had it's own area. Courses in that program were offered in such areas as Golf Shop Management, Golf Turf Management, and Club Fitting and Club Repairs. Granted, it is only an associate degree. To be precise, it is an AAS (Associate of Applied Science) degree but still, I thought it a bit unusual for a college curricula.
To be fair, Golf Club Management is an offshoot of their Resort Management program, which actually has a bona fide Human Resources Management course along with Housekeeping Management. However, none of these courses or programs is listed in their "business" section. Perhaps that would stereotype them as dull and uninteresting. I also noted that all of their Resort Management courses except for Turf Management are taught by one person who has a BS in General Science. Talk about empire building.
In looking further through their bulletin, I noticed that the course that had the most sections offered was "Boot Fitting." I'd never heard of Boot Fitting as an academic discipline but there were eight sections of Boot Fitting, which was more than half of the total offerings for all of their business courses combined. There were seven sections of Boot Fitting l. Also offered was one section of advanced Boot Fitting procedures appropriately called Boot Fitting II. The demand for Boot Fitting II was obviously only about 14% of the demand for Boot Fitting l. One could only imagine that after a semester of Boot Fitting l, students are fairly well sick of it or at least have enough confidence to go out and fit boots.
I looked up the qualifications of one of the faculty members teaching Boot Fitting. "35 years of ski sales and bootfitting expertise." I wasn't surprised. That is probably the best background one could have. Besides, I seriously doubt if there are any Masters or Ph.D. programs in Boot Fitting. Actually, I have even more experience than that. I have 50 years of shoe and boot fitting experience. Besides, what do you say after, "How do they feel? Do they pinch your foot? Can you wiggle your toes?"
I've got boot fitting down to one basic issue, "These feel good. I'll take 'em." I don't know how I'd make a course out of that.