Post-Secondary Students

You are now at the point where you are ready to head to college or university.

This page will help you take the next steps to becoming a Registered Professional ForesterRegistered Forest Technologist  or Natural Resource Professional (NRP).

Please note: Post-secondary education is not required to become an Accredited Timber Cruiser, Accredited Timber Evaluator or Silvicultural Accredited Surveyor.

Choose a School

The education requirements vary depending on whether you decide to become a Registered Professional Forester (RPF), Registered Forest Technologist (RFT) or Natural Resource Professional (NRP).

Most people who are RPFs have a bachelor of science in forestry or natural resource management from an accredited program. UBC and UNBC both offer four-year programs that meet all the course requirements for becoming an RPF. Visit the Registered Professional Foresters page for more information on this designation.

Most people who are RFTs have a two-year forest technology diploma from an accredited program. Visit the Registered Forest Technologists page for more information on this designation.

2012 is the pilot year for the NRP program. Graduates from UBC's Natural Resource Conservation program with a major in Science and Management, UNBC's Outdoor Recreation and Conservation program or Wildlife and Fisheries program, and Thompson Rivers University's Resource Science programs will be eligible for enrollment in the ABCFP. Visit the Natural Resource Professional page for more information.

BC Schools Offering Forestry Programs

There are several post-secondary forestry programs in BC that will give you the first-class education you need in order to become a forest professional.

BC Institute of Technology (BCIT)
BCIT's School of Construction and the Environment offers a variety of natural resource management programs.
College of New Caledonia (CNC)
CNC offers a Natural Resources and Environmental Technology (NRET) Diploma.
Nicola Valley Institute of Technology (NVIT)
NVIT Natural Resource Technology Department offers a certificate and a diploma program.
Selkirk College
Selkirk College's School of Environment and Geomatics offers several natural resource programs.
Thompson Rivers University (TRU)
TRU's Faculty of Science offers a Natural Resource Science Program.
University of British Columbia (UBC)
UBC's Faculty of Forestry offers a variety of forestry programs.
University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC)
UNBC's Ecosystem and Science Management Program offers several natural resource programs. 
Vancouver Island University (VIU) (formerly Malaspina University College)
VIU offers several programs through their Forestry Department.

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While in School

Join START

Receive the magazine and e-newsletter, and participate in professional development.

As a START member, you will stay up to date on what's going on in the profession through subscriptions to our magazine and e-newsletter and discounts on some of our educational events. Join START Now!

Find your Niche

Forest professionals have knowledge of wildlife biology, fisheries, forest ecology, hydrology (the study of water) and silviculture (growing trees), soils, forest engineering, recreation, landscape design, etc. You can discover which areas interest through:

  • Your school course work
  •  Summer employment
  • Being a Mentee - Some post-secondary schools have mentoring programs where you can receive guidance from forest professionals.
  • Workshop Participation – check the Pro D Listings for offerings that might interest you. [ADD LINK]
  • Speaking with Forest Professionals - You can also request for a forest professional to speak to your class or you could job-shadow a forest professional for a day (send an e-mail request to Cheryl Waddell). 
  • Attending the association's annual forestry conference and AGM provides a great opportunity to speak with your future peer

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After You Graduate

Become an Enrolled Member of the ABCFP

After graduating from an accredited forestry program, you should enrol with the ABCFP as a Forester-in-Training or Forest Technologist in Training. During this training period you will be required to gain 24 months of work experience under the supervision of an Registered Professional Forester (RPF) or Registered Forest Technologist (RFT) .

Write the Registration Exam

Once you have met all academic and work experience requirements, the last step to becoming an RPF or RFT is to write and pass the registration exam.

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