Creating a Generation of Teens Connected to Trees
Junior Arborist Apprenticeship Program
Our 'junior arborist' apprenticeship program is intended for students 13 to 19 years old. The field and classroom training is designed to acquaint underserved students with the opportunities and careers within the broad and expanding field of arboriculture. The program has been designed with advise and direct involvement by University faculty and industry professionals. The level of involvement and hands-on activities are structured differently based upon the age group of the apprentices.
Junior Arborist training includes but not limited to: 1) How trees grow; 2) How to identify native trees; 3) How to inventory trees; 4) Tree care; 5) Tree roots; 6) Tree pruning; 7) Tree removal; 8) Tree climbing; 9) Tree planting; and 10) Soil management. All content are in alignment with National Generation Science Standards and relate to science content standards such as 8th and 9th grade Life Science MS-LS1-1 and HS-LS1-1.
With studies from Penn State University and Tree Care Industry Association, hands-on learning opportunities offer participating students access to a wealth of knowledge for the rapidly growing tree care industry. Students can expect to build lasting relationships, obtain Student International Society of Arboriculture membership, and become a Certified Applicator. All are enormous accomplishments, benefits, and experiences as college career choices, climate change, canopy coverage, and native tree recovery become ever more important to current students and future generations.
Students Learning All About Arboriculture
During Summer 2022, CITYGREEN had the opportunity and outright pleasure to educate, elevate, empower, and engage eight Marion Barry Summer Youth Employment Program, (MBSYEP) participants, two who have rejoined our new program under the DC Career and Technical Education Advanced Internship Program, also called DC CTE AIP. The DC CTE AIP is offered to District of Columbia Public Schools and Public Charter School students. With a total of ten students from four different high schools, we are extremely excited about the ability of this new cohort to be the beacon on the hill for students looking for other options after high school.
The 2022 cohort is the first of this decade, but the second of its kind. For it was in 2009, that the first group of teens were gather from street corners and basketball courts to learn about tree removal and urban forestry. Now, twelve years later it feels good to dust off carabiners, harnesses, and ropes for a renewed opportunity to offer young people the ability to explore an industry in need of diversity, new ideas, and talent. Apart of a joint venture to provide emergency tree removal services to the District's Urban Forestry Administration, the first cohort of junior arborist lased up their boots in the Spring of 2009 and unlashed them in the Fall of the same year. The program was short lived due to the lack of support of the junior arborist program and the tree care industry amongst several key agencies heads and officials at that time. Then, at some point during our base year one key requirements was changed, it was a major change within the contract requirements, that uniquely disqualified us from option year 1.
At any rate, as in 2009, and now again in 2022, the Arboriculture Pre-Apprenticeship program is designed for students who face barriers to traditional employment, have little-to-no knowledge or experience in tree care, and or will consider an arboriculture apprenticeship or employment after completion. The program will focus on the field of arboriculture, creating pathways to eliminating structural joblessness, reducing crime and violence through community-based tree plantings, inspiring students to pursue environmental careers, and most importantly, positioning students to become certified, qualified, and recognized environmental advocates and stewards within their community.