What a year it’s been so far! We are proud and excited to announce the opening of our new training centre which is now fully operational.
Training for Trees is now in its 11th year of operation and we have made a major investment in the VET sector to continue in the delivery of first class arboricultural training in Australia.
One of the major investments we have made is to set up and resource face-toface delivery of the AHC50516 Diploma of Arboriculture, (also known as AQF level 5).
The course has been running at TFT since November 2017 and is progressing as planned with the first class on target to graduate by December 2018.
The AHC50516 Diploma of Arboriculture qualification provides occupational outcomes with integrated knowledge and skills for skilled or paraprofessional work and as a pathway for further learning and required skills for consulting arborists in the arboricultural industry.
We have an association with ArborCAD software, for our Diploma student’s benefit, which is computerized software designed to provide a platform and assistance to enable the production of high quality site plans along with advanced technology to enable production of high quality professional tree reports.
What is ArborCAD?
Basically, it is purpose-built computer aided design (CAD) software that has been developed especially for the needs of Arborists.
Our Diploma students have unlimited access and support to use this software while they are enrolled in our Diploma course and use it to produce high quality assignments and class room work.
It works by using an architectural drawing, a Google Earth/Maps image or from developing the plan from scratch.
You are able to produce accurate, professional drawings to local and international standards.
Tree data is collected on site and the TPZ, SRZ, Canopy, Trunk, Tree ID and other textual information are all inserted into the drawing. You can also include a schedule of all the trees and work required as well.
Students also get to look at the internal parts of trees up close in class using loupes and modern microscopes to view anatomy and physiology, using equipment supplied by TFT.
Our students learn how to identify and select trees, examine and assess trees, diagnose and recognise tree diseases and defects, understand legislation, document and audit tree work as well preparing arborist reports.
We also have a relationship with Biosecurity Queensland who deliver presentations to our Diploma classes regarding the identification of pests and diseases and action to take if any are discovered, so that as arborists we are up close and personal with our trees and often best placed to notice any strange pest or disease effect.
TFT also have associations with suppliers and providers of state of the art tree diagnostic systems and equipment.
Upon successful completion of the training and assessment program graduates receive a nationally recognised Diploma of Arboriculture and will be considered qualified to be able to develop their career as an Arboricultural Consultant.
Participants successfully completing the Diploma of Arboriculture can undertake further study in this area of specialisation as it is a pathway to AQF Levels 6-8
TFT recommends all participants who enrol in the Diploma course hold a Certificate III in Arboriculture or have at least a minimum of three years at managerial/supervisory level of tree industry/work experience in order for them to satisfactorily complete the course at Diploma level. All students are required to have completed an Australian Senior Secondary Certificate of Education or equivalent (e.g. Year 10) as well as undertaking an LLN assessment to assess their suitability to complete the course and its assignments.
Candidates are interviewed prior to commencement to ensure the course is suitable for their needs. The journey that is undertaken to achieve a qualification is a process that requires the student to have a regular attendance in class, pay attention to detail with passion and commitment demonstrating a willingness to work hard and submit homework and assignment projects within the required time limits.
At Training for Trees our successful graduates are in high demand by industry and so far it would seem that they have no problems in gaining full time employment with some even going on to start up on their own business as professional arborists.
At TFT we believe the message is finally getting through regarding the importance of training and qualification and the benefits that it can bring to everyone including the trees.
What do I Need to Do to Become an Arborist?”
Our advice regarding entering into the arboricultural profession is to enrol in the course that best suits your needs then commit to invest as much time learning the processes and procedures of the job as possible ask lots of questions and make an effort to learn some tree names.
Make an effort to take ownership of your learning both at work and in your own time. Even when you are dragging branches to the chipper you could be learning about trees. How do they smell? How heavy is the wood? Do you get splinters in your hands? What colour is the timber? Are there flowers or fruits? Why is the heartwood soft or hollow? What is in the pruning standard AS4373?
At TFT we believe that the latest arboricultural qualifications offer a challenging process both in their delivery and in the journey required to achieve their required outcomes but the outcomes far outweigh the challenges and are producing well rounded graduates that are well trained and able to offer a high level of skill back to their respective employers in the workplace.
The process we at TFT have been suggesting for several years now is proving to be so true regarding the almost every day question we get from employers which is: “How do I get a new climber or a new consulting arborist to join my operation”?
Well they don’t grow on trees unfortunately, but if you want to have reliable professional staff you have to be prepared to train them up and that takes an investment both financially and in time and effort requiring amongst other things large amounts of support tolerance patience understanding etc.
One of the best sources for new staff often comes from within your company when a current employee is encouraged and supported to step up to the plate and develop new skills while to some extent learning on the job and earning their keep at the same time.
When this process is coupled with the journey through the Certificate III or the Diploma qualification and the employer works with the training organisation the outcome is a wellaudit the pruning standards within your crew? These sorts of sessions are great team builders and also help to promote safety and confidence within your workers
- Do you have a safety policy that includes safe work method statements, risk assessment and machinery checklists?
- Have staff members attended recent courses workshops or verification of competency (VOC) sessions?
- Are all qualifications certificates and licences up to date? Once a unit of competency, full qualification or licence has been attained, attending regular refresher and update days is a good way to ensure that the qualifications are kept up to date with the latest requirements. In some cases this is a mandatory requirement and rounded competent and qualified staff member that is a real asset to your business.
“One of the best sources for new staff often comes from within your company when a current employee is encouraged and supported to step up to the plate and develop new skills.”
At TFT we take our students on a journey through the individual units of competency that collectively make up the qualification with regular face-to-face classroom sessions as well as issuing assignments to be completed in the workplace as well as liaising with employers to ensure their employee is meeting their requirements.
Employers, you should budget and allow for certain elements of the training to be held off site and also be prepared to mentor your trainee within the workplace.
The partnership between an employer and their training organisation is extremely beneficial to the student and essential for the successful completion of a qualification. Can you demonstrate evidence of recent staff training or updating within your company?
- When did you last organize an aerial rescue practice day? Or in most cases is the same as getting a verification of competency or VOC. This is also an effective way to ensure that any bad habits that may have crept in are identified and rectified with further training recommended and carried out if required.
Unfortunately as these guys don’t just grow on trees so there is a current shortage of qualified arborists in Australia, therefore we believe that one of the best ways for any company to ensure a continuity of qualified efficient staff would be to consider consistently employing at least one apprentice that is new to the industry enrolling them into the Certificate III in Arboriculture apprenticeship program and take the time to mentor them through their training.
As they progress through their apprenticeship, they will begin to repay your investment by becoming more useful and able to operate within your company.
By the time they graduate, they will go on to become your next climber or crew leader and can maybe start helping to train the next apprentice and so on. If they leave and move on once qualified then at least you will have had some return on your investment while they were employed with you and the upcoming apprentices will keep the cycle flowing giving you access to staff that already know your business and systems providing a return on the investment you have made in them.
Consider your strategy for training and how you can keep your existing qualifications up to date.
“Everyone engaged in carrying out work with trees must be trained and qualified in their designated task and strive to maintain and improve their industry currency by continuing to gain relevant experience and qualifications”.
Training is as important as the servicing of vehicles and machinery. After all, workers are the machinery that you run and need to maintain to enable the smooth operation of your business.
It has been proven that independent training and assessment increases staff retention safety awareness productivity and efficiency.
Remember to schedule in regular refresher and update training sessions.
To be officially classified as an arborist, you will need to complete the qualification AHC30816 Certificate III in Arboriculture or the AHC50516 Diploma of Arboriculture.
Check out your eligibility for funding. Enrol now for the new intake Certificate III Arboriculture and Diploma. Now booking Chainsaw courses running regularly (all levels), EWP Licence, First Aid, Working at heights, Chipper, Stump grinder, Polesaw and AC/DC. Contact us for your qualifications, short courses VOC, RPL and refresher training. Train with us and leaf qualified.