In forestry conservation programs, students can focus on specializations like forest technology, forestry, or forest resource management. There aren't many educational prerequisites for these programs, but applicants must at least be high school graduates or have a GED. Program length varies, but most take about one year to complete. Online programs are available, but are often hard to find. Students are prepared for entry-level careers in the forestry industry, or they may go on to pursue associate's or bachelor's degrees in relevant fields.
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Certificate in Forestry Conservation
The classes in the program teach the theories and practical applications of forest and wildlife management and restoration. Typical class topics include:
- Forest management
- Plant identification
- Wildlife conservation and management
- Park and rangeland management
- Forest soils
- Global positioning techniques
Popular Career Options
Forestry conservation certificate programs prepare students for careers where they help manage natural resources and wildlife habitats. They may also help manage land that is used for recreational activities, such as boating, hiking, and camping. Potential career choices include:
- Forestry or biological or environmental technician
- Park assistant
- Forestry aide
- Survey technician aide
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), forestry and conservation workers will likely see 4% growth in employment during the 2014-2024 decade. These professionals earned a mean salary of $29,860 per year in 2015, according to the BLS. The same source indicated that forestry and conservation technicians earned a mean of $38,260 annually the same year.
For those who wish to advance their careers in the forestry field, a bachelor's degree in forestry can open up more doors and increase salary potential, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Advanced degrees in biology, ecology, and other scientific fields are also available; advanced degrees may be required for teaching and research positions.
Certification through the Society of American Foresters is another way to advance. With a degree, five years of experience and successful completion of a written exam, foresters can become certified and increase their career and earnings potential. Some states also require foresters to be licensed, according to the BLS, and other states have mandatory registration statutes. Licensure requirements often include completing a bachelor's degree program in forestry and obtaining several years of work experience.
Students interested in forestry conservation can earn a certificate, or go on to pursue an associate's or bachelor's degree to become forestry and conservation workers or technicians. These programs focus on conservation and management, and students can choose to become certified or licensed depending on the state they work in.