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Arborist Apprenticeship Program - Ostvig Tree Care
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Arborist Apprenticeship Program

tree trimming and pruning

Arborist Apprenticeship Program

MADISON, Wis. – In response to employer demand, the state of Wisconsin has created a new apprenticeship program for the arborist industry, said Ray Allen, Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development secretary.

Apprenticeship is structured training to prepare individuals for skilled occupations. It combines on-the-job learning under the supervision of experienced journey workers and related classroom instruction. It is sponsored by employers, employer associations or labor/management groups that can hire and train in a working situation.

The arborist industry approached the department and expressed an interest in creating standardized training for the profession. Desiring to create a national standard within the industry, the industry sought to develop an arborist program that now also includes plant health care as well as tree care. The department will present the new program to the U.S Department of Labor for consideration as a federal program.

Arborists prune or remove trees and shrubs, and diagnose and treat tree and plant disease. They clear hazards from residential and commercial properties, and public roads and green spaces. The occupation is currently in high demand and is projected to increase as municipalities and other entities plant more trees as part of green initiatives.

Ron Zillmer, associate dean for the Technical and Industrial Division at Mid-State Technical College in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, has been leading industry involvement of the program in Wisconsin.

“Arborists are highly skilled professionals providing all aspects of tree care from planting and pruning to managing fertility, diseases and insects through plant-healthcare services,” Zillmer said. “The tree-care industry will now enjoy the benefits of skilled trade recognition as well as cutting-edge training delivered through the registered apprenticeship system.”

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