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Forest Industry Gets Closer To Campus

New Zealand Forest Industries Council


Senior managers in the forest industry will soon be seen on campus in a scheme designed to bring a sharp focus to forestry education.

Under the new Visiting Industry Fellow programme, middle and senior management in the forest industry will be invited to become Visiting Industry Fellows at the University of Canterbury’s School of Forestry.

Fellows will be resident on campus for varying periods of time and will continue to undertake their corporate management roles while interacting with lecturers and students, providing insights into the courses and outlining the needs of the fast growing wood processing sector.

“The forest industry is keen to co-operate with the tertiary sector to create an environment in which we can develop tomorrow’s forest industry business leaders,” New Zealand Forest Industries Council chief executive James Griffiths said.

“The focus now is on ensuring that high achieving forestry graduates are trained in the business management of the industry.

“We’re working with the University of Canterbury to build expertise in marketing, wood processing, finance, logistics and the wide range of business disciplines inherent in the expanding forestry and wood processing sectors, ” he said.

The value of the Fellowship will be the interaction it will promote between the forest industry, staff and students of the School of Forestry, and in the opportunity it provides for practical industry advice on the nature, quality and relevance of its degrees and research programmes.

Meanwhile, the industry is also providing practical opportunities for students to spend time developing their skills within forest industry companies.

Under a new Forest Industry Internship scheme, the School of Forestry and Forest Industries Council have jointly developed a recruitment agency approach to placing students coming up for their practical training. Half-page profiles of each student will be distributed to forest industry companies, which will provide internships based on the skills and attributes outlined in the profiles.

“We are matching specific student skills with meaningful short-term positions in the industry, an approach which will benefit both students and employers. It will also give students a practical appreciation of the demands of the fast-growing forest industry sector,” James Griffiths said.

“The School of Forestry has an obligation to provide graduates that fit the changing needs of industry. Likewise the forest industry can invest in their own future by contributing to the experience of forestry students at university. The Visiting Industry Fellow scheme and the Forest Industry Internship scheme will both contribute to achieving this,” Professor Roger Sands, Head of the School of Forestry said.

ends

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