Forestry Technician: Ecosystem Management


Ontario College Diploma

Area Of Interest

Natural Resources


2 years

Program Code



Thunder Bay


Start Dates & Ontario Colleges Program Codes:
Fall Start (September): 0391

See the Forest AND the Trees!

Confederation College’s Forestry Technician: Ecosystem Management two-year co-op diploma program prepares you for a career in all areas of forestry including forest management, forest resource conservation and protection, silviculture, fish and wildlife, fire management, research support, recreation and nature interpretation.

You’ll learn how to balance the social, economic and ecological aspects of our natural resources so that our region – and our people – will continue to grow and thrive.

The skills learned in this program are transferrable across Canada and around the world. Topics include tree & shrub identification, soils & geomorphology, harvesting & wood products, forest operations, the history and culture of Canadian Indigenous Peoples, insects & disease, forest plant biology, silviculture, fire management, fish & wildlife management and geographical information systems (GIS).

Top Highlights

  • Program includes two mandatory paid co-op placements after the second and fourth semesters of hands-on work experience. Placements are approx. 16 weeks in duration during the summer months.
  • Balance of class work, field study and placements for a well-rounded education
  • Graduates can transfer directly into the third-year of Lakehead University’s Faculty of Natural Resource Management four-year program, to obtain a degree
  • Transfer credits to other related college and university programs through our articulation agreements
  • Learn and work in a rich and diverse boreal ecosystem!

Program Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. conduct forest inventory surveys and field measurements to determine forest resources and values in forests and woodlots.
  2. assess soil characteristics, vegetation and wildlife habitats to identify their interactions within forest ecosystems.
  3. perform technical functions in silvicultural operations and assist in the monitoring and evaluation of the effectiveness of silvicultural practices.
  4. collect, analyze, interpret, and display spatial data using mapping technology and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to contribute to forest resource management.
  5. contribute to sustainable forest management plans, including conservation and rehabilitation measures, taking into consideration the perspectives of a variety of stakeholders and the requirements of relevant legislation and regulations.
  6. identify and analyze forest diseases, pests, invasive species and other disturbance events and implement mitigation strategies to maintain and improve forest ecosystems.
  7. select, operate, troubleshoot and maintain tools and equipment in a variety of environmental conditions and in accordance with safety and operating standards.
  8. work independently and in a collaborative environment while applying effective teamwork, leadership and interpersonal skills.
  9. communicate technical information to a variety of stakeholders in oral, written, visual and electronic forms.
  10. develop strategies for ongoing professional development to enhance work performance in the forestry sector.


Experiential Learning

  • Co-op,
  • Field Work.

Employment Opportunities

Graduates of the Forestry Technician - Ecosystem Management program go on to a variety of positions in government or industry including Resource Technician, Forest Survey Technician, Fire Ranger, Conservation Officer,  Scaler, Harvesting Supervisor, Silviculture Technician, Fish and Wildlife Technician and Park Ranger. However, this program can also provide a strong background for others living and working in the forest in areas including eco-tourism and recreation, research and academics and development of projects that have an impact on our forests.

NOTE: This program provides a mandatory Co-op Work Term placement ... (more information) ...

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Keith Hautala

Program Coordinator - Forestry Technician program & Professor in Environmental Technician program
(807) 475-6164

Contact our Recruitment Team