I’m Ralph Neville. I’ve worked as an Arborist with the District of North Vancouver for the past seven years. Here is my story…
Q: What do you love about your job?
A: I get to be outdoors while still being able to live in an urban setting. You get to see nature in action as part of your work every day. There is also a mix of routine and the unexpected – like a hazard tree coming down to spice things up now and then.
Q: How did you come to decide to pursue a career in this occupation?
A: A series of unintended consequences – I did not plan to become an arborist!
Q: What are good traits or skills that someone should have when considering this career?
A: There are a limited number of municipal positions out there plus you really need a combination of an Agriculture/Forestry background together with a good working knowledge of how to do tree work. The minimum a tech degree in forestry, but a University degree would be even better. A larger tree company such as Davey Tree Experts/ Bartlett Tree Experts or Asplundh would be better than a small company because of the diversity of work offered and the potential for managerial experience.
Q: What advice would you give someone considering a career in the Parks Sector?
A: Parks work is very diversified – from turf management, gardening, arboriculture, natural areas management, parks planning, etc. Try to get a summer job in a park so that you get a feel for the work place
Q: Do you have any hiring practices tips to share?
A: Just general job interview skills: be prepared, try to find out what the issues are for the park / municipality you would be working with, be enthusiastic at the interview, etc.