Forestry is one of New Brunswick’s biggest industries, and it’s a particularly important economic driver in the Miramichi region, which feeds mills and operations throughout the northern and central portions of the province. That makes Miramichi the ideal location for NBCC’s specialized Mechanized Forest Equipment Operator program.
“There’s definitely a forestry tradition in Miramichi,” said Mike Legere, Executive Director of Forest NB. “Miramichi is central to a lot of the province’s forestry operations, so it’s a good spot to have the training.”
The Mechanized Forest Equipment Operator program provides future woods workers with the skills and training needed to manage the forest of 2019 and beyond. Today’s forest management requires the operation of sophisticated equipment.
“The cockpits of the harvesters today are as sophisticated as a jet plane,” said Legere. “It’s a professional occupation that requires an understanding of what are the species we need to harvest, and where do we need a softer touch in cutting. We need our operators to be conscious of the sustainability of the work they’re doing.
“Without that person in the woods, harvesting, those trees, we can’t run an industry.”
Forest NB estimates that as much as two-thirds of New Brunswick woods workers will reach retirement age in the next 10 years. The job outlook is bright for those who want to start a sustainable, profitable career in New Brunswick.
“For someone who has a desire to work outdoors, it’s a good-paying job, and you’re home every night,” said Legere. “You can stay in New Brunswick in an industry with a good future, and enjoy a good work-life balance.