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Tilhill Forestry launches 2017 graduate programme
The leading forest management and timber harvesting company Tilhill Forestry is seeking graduates with drive, passion and enthusiasm who are interested in joining one of the forest industry’s leading companies.
Recent forestry graduates, or those studying for a degree in forestry or related subjects such as land management, environmental studies or horticulture, will be ideally placed to join Tilhill Forestry’s three-year graduate programme. Successful applicants are assigned to a district office or business stream where they learn every aspect of that area, including shadowing highly experienced colleagues.
Tilhill Forestry Managing Director George McRobbie said: “The forest industry is a fantastic career choice and Tilhill Forestry is a superb company to work for. We are looking for graduates with drive, enthusiasm and passion. Tilhill offers all its employees a friendly and challenging work environment with good personal and career development opportunities.”If you’re a recent graduate or studying for your degree, you can find out more about our graduate opportunities by visiting the careers section at www.tilhill.com Applications should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and the process closes on 28th February 2017. Should you require further information, please contact Sharron Nimmo, HR Specialist on 01786 435000.
Read about some graduates who have recently joined the Tilhill Forestry programme:
Jude Fielding BA MSc
For Jude Fielding, studying forestry was a natural progression from his previous career in countryside estate management, and offered him a chance to follow in his father’s footsteps who has been working in Forestry for nearly 30 years. Jude joined Tilhill Forestry’s graduate scheme earlier this year after completing an MSc in Forestry at Aberdeen University. He is now an Assistant Forest Manager based at Tilhill‘s Devon office.
“In my previous job I enjoyed being able to work outside managing new planting schemes for the renewable energy industry. Having grown up in rural North Wales with a forester as a father, I was given many opportunities to spend time outdoors. However, to follow in my father’s footsteps, I realised I needed to be qualified and doing a Masters at Aberdeen University was a logical choice,” Jude explained.
He says that he chose Tilhill Forestry as it seemed one of the best graduate programmes in the forestry industry.
“Joining a graduate scheme is one of the best ways to get into this industry, allowing me instant management experience and responsibility, as well as the potential to gain further on the job training and qualifications that would be difficult elsewhere. Tilhill’s training plan aims to give you the necessary training and experience within a few years to ‘graduate’ to become a fully-fledged forest manager.”
Jude’s role so far has involved timber measurements, harvesting supervision, planting scheme design and implementation including managing and supervising contractors. He has also been writing his first management plan, with a second soon to follow and has had the opportunity to try his hand at mapping, producing hazard and biodiversity maps for the management plan he is currently writing.
He says: “I am really enjoying it. I get to spend on average two to three days a week in the woods, in all types of weather. The woodlands I am helping to manage become your second office, and they are wonderful places to be.”Jude’s advice for anyone considering joining Tilhill Forestry: “It’s a great company that will invest time in training you. The support you get in the office is fantastic and it’s one of the best graduate schemes I’ve seen in the industry. There are lots of opportunities to learn and visit other offices that might be carrying out other types of woodland management not available in your area, and this helps expand your experiences. The difference with Tilhill is that it’s a large company compared to most competitors and this offers a unique range of opportunities and experiences within the forestry industry.”
Siân Jones MICFor, MSc Forestry
Assistant Forest Manager Siân Jones graduated with an MSc in Forestry from the University of Aberdeen. She was inspired to pursue forestry further whilst working for the Forestry Commission (now NRW) in south Wales following her undergraduate degree in Ecology at the University of Edinburgh.
Now based in Tilhill Forestry’s Llandovery office, Siân is enjoying working on every aspect of forest management from timber sales and supervision of harvesting, to re-stocking and working on woodland creation schemes. UKWAS plans are also an important part of her work to make sure wood is certified and the timber can be sold with the FSC mark of socially, environmentally and economically sustainable forest management.Siân has found working on woodland creation particularly rewarding. She explains: “It’s fantastic being involved from start to finish – from meeting the client to firm up a proposal, to securing the grant and then managing the actual planting and maintenance. It’s very satisfying being a part of every step.”
Siân has been submitting plans for a number of schemes, including woodland creation on a 48-hectare site which she says is substantial for Wales at present.
When she started on the graduate scheme two years ago Siân didn’t know what to expect but she says she has been impressed with the scheme. “Tilhill makes you feel valued and I have had all sorts of formal and informal training that has exposed me to different aspects of the business and allowed me to build my skills rapidly. One of the things I like most is that through the Graduate Development Programme you build a network of people at the same stage as you with whom you can share experiences and keep in touch. I also like the flexibility of exploring what you are interested in. For instance I write a lot of plans because I’m good at it and enjoy writing them.”
Siân has taken advantage of the support provided by Tilhill to go through the process of becoming a chartered forester. At time of writing, she had just received confirmation that she has passed with Distinction and is now a Professional Member of the Institute of Chartered Foresters.
Alex Flinn BSc Hons
Alex Flinn is now an Assistant Forest Manager at Tilhill Forestry’s Bala office in North Wales. He was appointed earlier this year after graduating from the University of Cumbria with a BSc Honours in Forest and Woodland Management.
Alex applied to join the Tilhill Forestry graduate scheme after researching potential employers on line and then deciding he wanted to work in the private sector.
He said: “From my first approach, Tilhill staff were very friendly and good at answering questions which all contributed to me wanting to apply. There was also an office in Needham near to where I grew up which appealed to me.”
Currently, Alex is involved in site visits, talking to sub-contractors, writing out work instructions, using GIS to map out sites and filling out felling licences among other work. He started in June 2016.
Alex added: “I really like the amount of work outside. There is a good balance with work inside and I am finding everyone extremely friendly and helpful. I feel like I am trusted with lots of responsibility but I’m never scared to ask questions.”
Unusually for a graduate, Alex left school with just a few GCSEs. He worked as a tree surgeon and carried out contract felling. It was this experience that helped him secure a place at the University of Cumbria. Alex says he would definitely recommend forestry to others especially if you like working outdoors. He also advises potential applicants to get some experience during their studies such as a placement.
He says he definitely made the right choice about joining Tilhill Forestry. “There are so many opportunities to learn more and progress your professional portfolio. I particularly like the trust managers have in you as a recent joiner. For instance I represented the company in a meeting after only five months in the job.”
Jamie Adcock BScJamie Adcock joined Tilhill Forestry in mid-July after graduating with a BSc in Forestry from Bangor University.
He says he chose Tilhill because he knew the company is the leader in the private sector and also came into contact with Tilhill during his third-year placement with the Forestry Commission. He was also attracted to the Company after learning that investment in training and staff is taken very seriously.
Jamie, 27, worked as a ski instructor in Canada and New Zealand after leaving school so he is pleased that he was assigned to Tilhill’s Dunblane office which means he can head to the mountains after work.
Originally from the Midlands near Loughborough, Jamie is an Assistant Forest Manager with a broad role and lots of responsibility.
He explains: “I’ve been planning and supervising forest operations with a mix of new planting and re-stocking operations. When I’m in the office, which is about half of the time, I am working on GIS mapping and grant applications along with organising contractors and materials. It’s very rewarding when I get on site to see work progressing and to see that I’ve helped to make an impact. I’m really glad I joined Tilhill as there is huge potential for career development.”
Asked whether he has any advice for potential applicants: “Make sure you have a driving licence and do a mid-year placement. All of the students on my course who did placement have managed to secure work.”
Richard Hartley PGd
Richard Hartley joined Tilhill Forestry’s graduate programme after studying for a Post Graduate Degree in Forestry at Harper Adams University.
Richard, aged 35, was an army officer in the Royal Logistic Corps but has always been interested in forestry. He heard about Tilhill Forestry’s graduate scheme through his university’s careers fair and was also impressed when he visited a number of Tilhill-managed sites as part of his studies.
He explains: “I wanted a job that got me outdoors more. My father was a horticulturalist so that type of work is in my blood.”Originally from Nottingham, Richard is now based at Tilhill Forestry’s Jedburgh office and is enjoying a varied role as an Assistant Forest Manager that involves new woodland creation schemes, supervising site preparation, pest and weed checks, wildlife surveys and timber measurement.
Richard said: “I am finding the job very rewarding and I’ve been given lots of responsibility in a short time. It’s pretty incredible to be involved with helping to change landscapes in a positive way. I’m currently involved with a site called Larriston near Newcastleton where we are transforming a 600 hectare sheep farm into forest.
“I highly recommend Tilhill Forestry’s graduate scheme as it’s a great way to gain knowledge in a supportive environment. The company as a whole has so much to offer in terms of opportunities to work in forest management, on the harvesting side of the business, or with the investment team, and at different locations around the UK.”