Master Pond Manager

The Master Pond Manager (MPM) achievement course is designed to teach participants a wide range of pond management knowledge and skills. As a "hybrid" course combining online and face-to-face learning, it will incorporate self-paced lectures, discussion, quizzes, and other web-based methods of participant-instructor interaction, along with hands-on participation activities in the field.

To learn more, watch our course introduction video, and read more details about the course below.

Depending on your track, the course may include six parts (see Syllabus for details):

  • Recreational Pond Design, Permitting, and Management Strategies
  • Stormwater Pond Design, Inspection, and Maintenance
  • Limnology
  • Integrated Aquatic Plant Management
  • Best Management Practices for Stormwater Ponds
  • Fish Management

INTENDED AUDIENCE. Pond owners, pond management professionals, community staff, stormwater managers, landscapers, contractors, property managers, parks staff, planners, and developers. Click here to see our current list of Certified Master Pond Managers.

COURSE STRUCTURE. Course curriculum is offered through two tracks, the full Master Pond Manager certificate or a letter of completion in management.

MASTER POND MANAGER ($500). Participants can choose to complete the full, six-module e-learning, field curriculum, and exam to obtain the marketable Master Pond Manager recognition. Master Pond Managers will be recognized through this program for their achievement and increase in knowledge in both recreational and stormwater pond management. Participants who complete the full six-week Master Pond Manager curriculum will also be eligible to receive 3 hours of recertification credits toward their Category 5 pesticide license. To maintain certification, participants must complete continuing education requirements.

LETTER OF COMPLETION IN MANAGEMENT ($250). Alternatively, participants can complete an abbreviated four-module e-learning and field curriculum to gain a “Letter of Completion” in:

  • Recreational Pond Management, or
  • Stormwater Pond Management.

This abbreviated course option is designed to allow private pond owners, such as a homeowner association member, the opportunity to gain content knowledge in one of the pond management areas without the rigor of the full achievement program. There is no exam or continuing education requirements associated with the Letter of Completion track.

COURSE PREREQUISITES. To be recognized as a Master Pond Manager, participants must maintain a commercial pesticide license in Category 5, Aquatic Pest Control, or a non-commercial or private license. There are no prerequisites to participate in the “Letter of Completion” track.

iPad screenshot

FORMAT. The course will be offered through Clemson Extension and includes online and in-person curriculum.

The online classroom will feature:

  • Learn from home or work using computer or tablet/iPad
  • Complete coursework on your schedule and at your pace
  • Earn certification and professional development hours
  • Learn from local experts with material specific to South Carolina’s conditions, soils, regulations, experiences and practices

Each track of the course will also include a field day component to get hands-on tracking with experts.


  • Since this course delivers lecture, video, and interaction material via the internet, the participant must have access to a desktop computer, a laptop, or a tablet (iPad, Android). A computer that is 5 years old or newer is strongly recommended. At least 1GB of RAM is required. More details here.
  • To use an iPad, it must be able to run iOS 8 or newer. An Android device must be able to Android 4.0.3 or newer. More details here. There is a free app you can download for either platform.
  • A broadband (DSL, Cable, etc) internet service is required to access learning content.
  • The course content is accessed via your web browser, so no special software is required. Adobe Flash is NOT required, though it may enhance your experience on a computer.
  • On a tablet (iPad and Android), a free mobile application is offered for ease of use.
  • Don't hesitate to give us a call (see right sidebar) if you have any questions about your technical access to the course.


Registration is closed for the Spring 2020 class. If you would like to notified of future offerings of Master Pond Manager or be placed on the waiting list for the Spring 2020 class, please email Guinn Wallover.

Spring 2020 Course
The Spring 2020 course will run online from mid March through June, with in-person field days held in the Charleston, SC area on April 30 and/or May 1. Review the course syllabus for details.

Program Coordinator
Guinn Wallover
Water Resources Agent
Clemson Extension

Program Team
Lance Beecher, PhD
Kimberly Counts Morganello
W. Cory Heaton, Ph.D.
Dan Hitchcock, Ph.D., P.E.
Chuck Jarman, P.E.
Derrick Phinney
Amy Scaroni, PhD
Guinn Wallover
Jack Whetstone


  • If you're a current course participant, click here to login to the online classroom. Unless you have a account, you will click the sign-in link for "Continuing & Professional Education".
  • If you're a certified Master Pond Manager, click here to login to our Certified Master Pond Manager Virtual Hub.