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There are many jobs in the forest products industry in the forestry professionals category. It’s a diverse mix of jobs, but each one plays a role in forest operations management. Forestry professionals guide decisions and policies relating to forest land management. These roles are considered professional because they require specific educational qualifications combined with operational experience.
As a forestry professional, you may find yourself working with a wide range of people — landowners, purchasers, managers, technicians, contractors, and other professionals — to manage the forest in an environmentally and economically sustainable way. If you enjoy intellectually demanding work that also gets you outdoors, consider becoming a forestry professional. Some of your week could be spent walking over rough terrain and driving to remote forest job sites.
Forestry professionals usually have a college or university degree. In some cases, lots of experience and good job reviews can substitute for a college degree. Many people in this role start as entry-level technicians and crew, while learning the trade from experienced managers. A successful career as a forestry professional depends on combining job experience, education and dedication.
Forestry technicians are skilled people experienced in technical tasks that don’t usually require heavy equipment, tools or hard physical labor. Instead, their main work requires applied knowledge and skills in data recording. Working as a forestry technician means you’re comfortable using a range of instruments to do things like taking measurements, surveying land, and inspecting and monitoring job sites.
There are many different kinds of forestry technicians. Most of their work happens outdoors. You need to be fit enough to trek across rough, often steep, terrain. A typical day could see you working as part of team to fight forest fires. Or you could be tasked with marking timber to set up environmentally sustainable harvesting operations. Road and trail construction is another key duty.
The job also offers a chance for advancement because you are exposed to so many different aspects of a forest company’s operation.