Forestry Teacher Workshop
Article #249, April 2017
By Bill Cook
Sustainable forest management requires a considerable amount of expertise. Teachers are a key audience to help students understand what this might mean.
Michigan has a flamboyant logging history, which often colors how citizens view current forest management. Red flannel and Paul Bunyan tend to dominate some perceptions. Yet, modern forest management encompasses a wealth of knowledge, skills, and technologies.
Forestry today is much more than logging. Sustainable management includes much more than timber. Linking two key Michigan resources, teachers and forests, makes sense to both the Michigan Forest Association (MFA) and MSU Extension.
The 2017 workshop is at the DNR Ralph A. MacMullen Center near Grayling, an historical icon unto itself. The dates are 19-23 June and the cost to teachers is only $100 thanks to support from many forestry companies, agencies, organizations, and individuals. More information can be found on the MFA website.
The MFA held their first sustainable forestry workshop for teachers in 2011. The MFA teamed-up with Forestry Extension Specialists to develop and teach a week-long set of classroom sessions, hands-on activities, and field tours. Reviews have consistently been excellent. Over 70 teachers have completed the workshop. University and continuing education credits are available.
The program covers a range of topics, from forest history to forest ecology to hi-tech logging and milling practices. The entire week highlights the sustainable and environmentally-friendly theme of modern forest management. The northern Michigan location offers many excellent venues.
Most of the teachers come away impressed with the commitment and quality of individuals and companies involved in this key Michigan industry. Employment opportunities require good skills and offer living wages and benefits. Teachers also come to realize how much science and social elements determine what happens in our forests.
If you, or someone you know, might be interesting in attending, then visit the MFA website for contacts and further information.
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Bill Cook is an MSU Extension forester providing educational programming for the Upper Peninsula. His office is located at the MSU Forest Biomass Innovation Center near Escanaba. The Center is the headquarters for three MSU Forestry properties in the U.P., with a combined area of about 8,000 acres. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 906-786-1575.
by Bill Cook, Forester/Biologist, Michigan State University Extension, 6005
J Road, Escanaba, MI 49829
906-786-1575 (voice), 906-786-9370 (fax), e-mail: email@example.com
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