Scholarships: funding our future
We all know that one of our biggest, if not the biggest hurdle we face in operating our business is farm financing. Second is finding employees, especially trained employees, to get the job done. One of the best resources we have is students who have been trained and completed course work in Arboriculture. The industry, through organizations and individuals, offers a lot of money in academic scholarships to students to help them complete their education if they apply for them.
The New England Chapter offers two $2500 scholarships to students who are willing to write a page about themselves and provide their transcripts to the review committee. There are other tree organizations that offer scholarships comparable to these. This is a substantial piece of money for not a lot of effort. I have been involved with the New England Chapter scholarship committee for a number of years and can't understand why there is not more participation on the part of students. I wonder if other organizations experience the same low number of candidates
The New England Chapter writes the check to the student and doesn't ask any further questions. This should not compromise any other aid that might be available to them. The Chapter, through our State representatives, distributes scholarship information to schools with green industry programs. Most of the applications we receive come from Stockbridge/UMASS students and I thank Dr. Ryan for that. But still there are only a few. I am asking you, the Members, to get the word out to students, who you may know through your work, family or friends, that these scholarships are available. For some it may be their first contact with the industry. We have to encourage these future Arborists.
On another student related item, The New England Chapter, with the help of Dr. Ryan, has developed a one credit independent study course to encourage students to participate in professional conferences, workshops, seminars and workdays in order to learn and network with professionals in the industry. The course will require the student to attend or participate in one conference, one seminar or workshop and one workday activity over the course of a semester. The student will be required to submit a written report on each event. This has been made available to any student studying in New England.
The New England Chapter will reimburse the student for registration and related expenses associated with attending these activities with proper receipts.
If I can help with any of your ISA needs, please contact me at 603-490-4344.
Sincerely, Richard Herfurth, President