Forestry Student Resources, Scholarships, and Support Services
Explore dozens of academic and professional resources, schools with top support services, and more than 15 scholarships that can help you succeed on your forestry college and career journey.
Last Updated: 11/30/2020
If you love trees and the outdoors, a forestry degree could help turn your interests and skills into an exciting career. As more forestry degrees pop up online and on-campus, you’ll want to know how you can complete one of these degree programs without breaking the bank. Similarly, you should also be on the lookout for supportive resources to help you before, during, and after earning your forestry degree.
Fortunately, there are plenty of scholarships, resources, and student services that can make your college journey more affordable and rewarding, which we’ll showcase in this guide. Keep reading to find this year’s top scholarship opportunities and support resources for forestry students.
Campus and Online Support Resources for Forestry Students
Graduating from college and finding your first job can feel challenging but know that you can find support from many places if you know where to look. As a forestry student, you can take advantage of several academic and career support resources that are valuable before, during, and after college. Many schools offer services tailored specifically to forestry programs, making it easy to find help when you need it. We highlight two top programs providing excellent student services below.
University Student Support Centers and Services
While almost every college provides general support services for students, finding a school with forestry-specific services can significantly benefit you. When looking at prospective schools, ask about departmental services. Does the department offer a writing center or assistance finding an internship? Can you get help with degree-specific advising or support with forestry-related technology? Locating a program with individualized services can benefit you before enrolling and even after graduating. Two of the best programs for student services are profiled below.
University of Kentucky
University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point
Articles, Videos, Books and Podcasts for Forestry Students and Professionals
Essentials of Conservation Biology This must-read publication brings together research and theory to help you understand how conservation biology, climate change theory, land management, and ecology all work together.
Journal of Forestry Hosted by Oxford Academic, this journal has published bi-monthly since 1902. Here you can find academic and peer-reviewed articles on topics related to the forestry profession and forestry management.
Making a Career in Forestry This educational YouTube video talks about what it takes to find a forestry career and what you can expect once joining the field.
What Can You Do with a Forestry Degree? If you want to learn about available careers, areas of work, degree requirements, and the availability of online programs, check out this informative guide.
Your Forest Podcast Check out this bi-monthly podcast on all things forestry and forest management, including interviews with leading experts and information about the industry.
Forestry Professional Associations and Student Organizations
Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) CIFOR supports practitioners and researchers alike by providing cutting-edge research, opportunities for publication, events, and industry news.
National Arborist Association (NAA) Joining NAA provides you access to a network of accomplished arborists, advanced training opportunities, an industry blog, and active social media pages.
National Association of State Foresters (NASF) NASF was established in 1920 and works to bring together forestry agency directors. The group provides policy statements, educational campaigns, events, and state-defined solutions.
Society for Range Management (SRM) Comprised of members from nearly 50 countries, SRM provides access to student support services, continuing education, committees, job listings, and industry resources.
Society of American Foresters (SAF) As the leading membership organization in the field, SAF provides university accreditation, an annual convention, continuing education, publications, community support, and career information.
Forestry Social Media and Online Communities
Angeline Nyce Twitter Angeline Nyce works as a lawyer and a professional forester. Follow her on Twitter to get an insider’s look at what a day in forestry includes.
Forester AMA A professional forester participated in an Ask Me Anything and shared their answers. Review this to get an inside perspective on careers in forestry.
International Forestry Students’ Association Facebook Group More than 13,000 people currently follow this Facebook group. Learn about what’s happening for students and connect with others who could be valuable future contacts for your professional network.
Forestry Journal Instagram Follow the Forestry Journal’s Instagram page to get regular updates on important emerging topics and professional forestry updates.
r/forestry Check out this popular Reddit page where you can connect with other forestry students and professionals, ask questions, and learn about topics within the industry.
Support Resources for Students in Online Forestry Programs
As more students decide to pursue online forestry degrees, more resources have become available to support distance learners; the increase in these resources has grown exponentially during COVID-19. Whether you’re looking for tips on managing your time well or need ideas for feeling more connected when you’re not on campus, the resources highlighted below can help.
Cornell University’s ForestConnect Cornell University provides a series of internet-based seminars devoted to educating individuals about forest land management. They take place once per month.
Detailed Look at Online Forestry Degrees Here you can find information about the best online forestry degree programs, varying degree levels offered, skills you can expect to gain, and a list of typical courses.
Online Student’s Guide to Time Management While online learning provides plenty of benefits, there can be a steep learning curve when trying to manage your time without the traditional structure of attending in-person classes. This guide gives pointers for managing your time well.
Online Forestry Resources Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences provides a comprehensive list of resources to help online students stay connected while in school and beyond.
Student Guide to Online Learning Success If you’re thinking about pursuing an online forestry degree but want to feel more confident as a distance learner before taking the plunge, this guide can help you.
College-Sponsored Scholarships in Forestry
Forestry scholarships offered by colleges and universities provide some of the best funding opportunities to pay for school. Because these opportunities are only available to students attending specific programs are eligible, you have a much higher chance of receiving funding.
If you’re unsure where to start your search, consider contacting the financial aid office or the program director. Both should be able to point you in the right direction. You can also look at both the departmental website and the general scholarship page to see if any are listed. We look at two schools providing ample forestry funding in this section.
Oregon State University (OSU)
University of Kentucky
Private Scholarships in Forestry
Besides scholarships awarded by individual colleges and universities, plenty of private awards exist that can be used at many different schools. Nonprofit organizations, community foundations, professional associations, and other socially-focused groups offer these awards. While more competitive than college awards, the applicant pool is usually smaller than a more populated program area, such as business. We highlight the top 15 options for 2021 below.
Tips for Winning a Forestry Scholarship
Because of the opportunity to receive free money for school, scholarships are inherently competitive and you will need to bring your A-game to receive these financial awards. You only get one chance to impress the individuals and committee members reading your application and making funding decisions, so make it count.
- Tip #1: Get some experience
Whether that involves volunteering or helping your grandparents cut down trees, find ways to gain experience in the field. Many applications ask about relevant work experience as part of the process.
- Tip #2: Demonstrate passion
Rather than just saying you’re interested in a forestry career, show it. Give specific examples of how you plan to use your degree, what difference you hope to make in the industry, and where you see yourself in 5 to 10 years.
- Tip #3: Proofread
Forestry scholarship application readers don’t expect you to write like an English professor, but they do not value applications with careless grammatical or spelling errors. Review your application carefully and ask someone else to do the same to make sure it is spotless and prepared for consideration.
- Tip #4: Start Early
Forestry may not be as competitive as biology or business, but you will still come across other students looking for funding. Start your scholarship process early to identify as many potential awards as possible and strengthen your chances.
- Tip #5: Get strong recommendations
Try building inroads within the forestry community as soon as possible. It tends to be a small group of professionals, which means a well-placed letter of recommendation from an industry leader can go a long way in making your application stand out.
Other Ways to Get Help Paying for College as a Forestry Student
In addition to scholarships, plenty of other funding options exist to help you pay for college. If you plan to work for a local, state, federal, or tribal government, you may qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program offered via the U.S. Department of Education. This program requires you to make 120 qualifying payments before having the remainder of your loan forgiven. Other financial aid options include:
- Student loans
- Employer-sponsored tuition reimbursement
- Loan forgiveness programs
- Paid fellowships/internships
- Federal work-study