3. LONG TERM FORCAST FOR THE FORESTRY PROFESSION

Joseph Zorzin redoak at forestmeister.com
Fri Jun 19 13:24:07 EST 1998


Don Baccus wrote:
> 

> Connecticut is the best place in the country to be a teacher (I heard
> that from the drummer of the chain-saw clone band I mentioned in my
> earlier post - he's a nice kid, and his mom's a teacher in Connecticut).

Of course the down side is - it's Connecticut. Crowded, high crime rate
and extremely high cost of living- and lousy New England weather.

> 
> Averages here in Oregon are FAR lower.

My week driving through Oregon- I was very impressed. Nice state.
Especially the coast which I drove down and stayed at the campsites all
along it.

> 
> But as far as forestry being considered a profession in the traditional
> sense, probably not.  Nor are physicists, biologists, chemists, or
> software engineers (we're not real engineers, i.e. we're not licensed
> PEs).  That traditional definition is very narrow and not likely to
> expand soon.
> 
> However, "professional" is also used in a more informal sense, and in that
> sense foresters should be able to attain the same status as a physicist,
> biologist, or software engineer I should think.  Plumbers aren't considered
> professionals even in this more informal sense, no matter how often they
> may use the term.

Plumbers around here usually live in 14 room mansions. <G>

> 
> Since you mention doctors, lawyers, dentists and architects I presume you
> mean the more traditional definition...

Well, too bad my profs didn't know all this with their constant use of
"professional forester". It must have indicated their inferiority
complexes.

Lets see- back in colonial America there were really only 3 professions-
doctor, professor, and "man of the cloth"- most of whom went to Harvard
or Yale. Almost veryone else was a farmer.

Then in the twentieth century came licensing for countless other lines
of work- which recipients could claim a kind of professionalism. I'm not
really sure why we need to license barbers and garbage collectors, but
we do here in MA.

I suppose licensing and the professionalization of careers has a lot to
do with political power and more so with how important society deems
those careers to be- and the resources those persons work on.

So, it's obvious society gives low value to it's forest land; whereas so
I've been told, that in Europe, forestry is far more important and the
forestry "profession" has a lot more status.

Here in MA, not only can a NON forester be responsible for logging
thousands of acres of land with all the resultant environmental impacts,
but that same second grade dropout can also prepare state tax law
forestry plans on private property. The idiocy of this is staggering and
is a good example of the low grade of professionalism in our state
politicians.

JZ



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