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Author Topic: Forestry Technician BC  (Read 1240 times)

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Offline Arrowwood123

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Forestry Technician BC
« on: April 15, 2014, 08:50:17 PM »
Hey Guys, I am looking for information about a career in forestry. I own a landscaping company in Ontario and have been in business for 4 years and I have been in the landscaping industry since I was 16 I am now 26. I am looking for a change, I am sick of the city life and running my business in general. I enjoy the outdoors and learning new things everyday and i thought forestry might work for me. I am looking to enroll in the forestry technician 2 year technical degree program at Selkirk College in Castlegar, British Columbia. I have a few questions if anyone could help me out about the industry.

which would benefit me better a 2 year technical degree through a college or a four year university degree?

what are the job prospects for someone like me coming out of school? and how does the future of forestry in BC look?

are there a lot of people going into this field?

Lastly could anyone who took this career path, what do you on a daily basis and do you enjoy your job?

Sorry for the long post and I would like to thank anyone who has taken the time to read it and give me a few answers.

thank you.  ;D

Offline sawguy21

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2014, 11:15:35 PM »
Welcome to the FF. Lots of good folk and information here. I don't want to dampen your spirits but forestry is a tough go here. Suggest you get details of the programs Selkirk has to offer, also talk to British Columbia Institute of Technology in Burnaby and UNBC in Prince George.
Go  to the members list (if you have access) and pm Tonich. Anton is a great guy, he is trying to break into it but has struggled even with considerable experience in his own country. Good luck.
old age and treachery will always overcome youth and enthusiasm

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2014, 04:47:06 AM »
If you look at this site, most of the jobs posted are in BC and Alberta and has been that way for years. The biggest thing however is they are regulated to death.

http://canadian-forests.com/job.html
Move'n on.

Offline WDH

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2014, 07:34:39 AM »
A four year degree will create more opportunities for you.
Woodmizer LT40HDD35, John Deere 2155, Kubota M5640SU, Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln, and a passion for all things with leafs, twigs, and bark.  hamsleyhardwood.com

Offline Arrowwood123

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2014, 09:33:14 AM »
Thanks for the information guys, I spoke with Selkirk college and they offered a CO-OP job position both terms. Hopefully that could get my foot in the door. I will def try and message Tonich. My biggest fear is graduating from school and being jobless. Whenever I look at schools in bc and ontario for 2 year technical degrees, they say that 80-90 percent of students find work within two months of graduating school, is this kinda a lie to get people to sign up or are they normally just getting the most basic entry level job.

My reason for choosing bc is my wife is doing her phd there in biology and thats most likely where she is going to be doing her work, however i dont mind travelling for work.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2014, 09:57:43 AM »
It would have to be in the west, because you don't see any positions here in the Maritimes posted for forest technicians. And with the new forestry plan DNR is going to get a whole lot smaller. You'll have to pretty much be a woods contractor cutting wood and financing your machines through the Irvings.
Move'n on.

Offline Mark Wentzell

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2014, 10:55:17 AM »
A technical diploma is a good choice, it's quicker to get and usually a little cheaper.  You will also probably spend more time outside if you're a technician rather than a forester (Although I'm sure there's some technicians who spend a lot of time in the office and some foresters who spend a lot of time in the field.)

As far as jobs go, there are reports coming out all the time talking about how the massive number of retirements that are going to be happening in the industry in the next few years. I don't know if this will translate into more jobs or not. A lot of government jobs seem to disappear when the person retires. The Maritimes are pretty much dead, Alberta and BC are where the majority of the jobs are.

 I'll be getting my diploma this afternoon, and I haven't regretted it...yet.  ;)

Offline ST Ranch

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2014, 12:19:20 PM »
Arrowwood123 - As others have said, forestry is on the decline in BC in comparison to 20 years ago, but the retirement factor is true, opportunities are/will be here as long as you are willing to move around to the job.

One big advantage you may have is your age and experience.  Forestry is really all about understanding ecology/biology and applying said principles to logging, mining, silviculture, habitat management, etc operations. Your 10 years in an outdoor job and some knowledge of soils and vegatation should give you a step up.
Also one of the biggest challenges today in forestry is finding "practical" technicians and foresters who can work independantly and make decisions on their own. Your experience again should help you.

Forester vs technician - suggest technician first, a lot cheaper to take at Selkirk or PG vs a degree and you can always go back and do your forester degree if you want.

Jobs often vary with the seasons and in government, with the flavor of provincial spending.  Many foresterts/techs have left BC and gone to AB to work in the oil/gas patch cuz of the big money, again leaving positions open in BC.  Part of problem is in BC the forest companies are cheap - they do not pay great wages and are hard on their contractors.

Hope this helps   -  good luck.
Tom
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873 Bobcat with CWS log grapple,

Offline Arrowwood123

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2014, 11:42:16 AM »
Thanks for the advice guys I really appreciate it. Selkirk seems to have a good program so I am going to apply this fall thanks !

Offline curdog

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2014, 04:38:36 PM »
I like the variety of a technician job. I don't know how things are in other areas but being a county ranger is something different about everyday. I oversee all aspects of a forestry program in my county. I may be teaching a school program in the morning checking a logging job before lunch, meeting a landowner to write a forest management plan after lunch and then responding to a wildfire later in the afternoon. I thought about going the forester route but I think I'm much happier with what I am doing now. I still have more than my share of paperwork, but it has been a few weeks or better since I have spent a lot of time in my office. The foresters I work with obviously spend most of their time writing forest management plans, but I like the variety of what I do. I still write plans for 35-45 landowners a year, but fire control is top priority. As a technician ( ranger) I'm out with the tree planting crews and meeting the loggers, talking to the school groups. It seems that the technicians develop a better relationship with the landowners in the counties because it is who the public sees everyday. The forester assigned to my county has multiple other counties to cover, so they may make it down every few weeks. Other agencies may be set up differently, but a highly recommend a technician position.

Offline Ron Scott

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Re: Forestry Technician BC
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2014, 09:45:58 PM »
One needs to evaluate the pay difference and career options between a Forest Technician and the Professional Forester's degree.
~Ron


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