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Environmental Sciences Department

Natural Resources Program

Using a diameter tape in Elementary Forest MeasurementsUsing a diameter tape in Elementary Forest Measurements
Measuring habitat condition in Applied SilvicultureMeasuring habitat condition in Applied Silviculture

Program Description

Spokane Community College's Natural Resources program prepares students to work in one of three resource areas: forestry, parks and recreation, wildlife and fisheries. The forestry option of the Natural Resources program is conditionally accredited by the Society of American Foresters.

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Program Goals

Students who successfully complete this program will be able to:

  1. Identify selected forest trees, shrubs, and forbs native to the Pacific Northwest
  2. Use various instruments to measure the height, diameter and age of trees and apply this data to board foot, volume, and growth determinations
  3. Identify species and habitat needs of common northwest freshwater fish
  4. Operate a hand compass, staff compass, transit, level, global positioning system, and electronic instruments in determining slopes, turning angles, running traverses, locating ownership boundaries, and determining locations
  5. Utilize maps and aerial photographs in the management of natural resources
  6. Be familiar with basic fire fighting techniques to include nomenclature and proper use of fire fighting instruments and equipment
  7. Recognize common diseases and insect pests of forest trees and assess their damage
  8. Use the computer as a tool for solving natural resources problems
  9. Apply basic knowledge in soils to the management of natural resources
  10. Utilize and incorporate into resource management plans basic knowledge concerning habitat needs of wildlife species including big game
  11. Demonstrate human relationship skills and professional behavior needed for successful job performance
  12. Utilize and incorporate recreation planning into multiple use management plans
  13. Recognize and apply the various silvicultural systems and techniques used in ecosystem management
  14. Maintain and safely operate a chainsaw
  15. Write technical reports and give presentations
  16. Use GIS to create maps and conduct spatial analysis
Students are invited to compete with the Logger's Sports Team (photo)
Students are invited to compete with the
Logger's Sports Team

Career Opportunities

The number of technical level jobs has increased in some areas and remained steady in most others. Public pressure for environmental protection and management has led agencies to undertake projects in all areas of the natural resources that require qualified field technicians to complete.

Employers of graduates include federal agencies such as the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service and the National Park Service; state forestry, park and wildlife agencies; county and city agencies and private forestry companies and contractors.

Potential positions include but are not limited to: Forestry technician or aide, biological technician or aide, GIS technician, park technician or aide, conservation aide, range aide, wildlife technician, fishery technician, surveying aide or timber worker.

Consult the official program outline
for more information about this program.
link to outline
For more information....For more information:
Program Contact:Tom Rieger
Phone: (509) 533-7267 or
1-800-248-5644 ext. 7267
Counseling Contact:Ric Villalobos, M.S., Counselor
Phone: (509) 533-7356 or
1-800-248-5644 ext. 7356
  You can also submit an online information request
or get our address to write for more information

You may be eligible for free tuition!
Follow this link to learn more .

Spokane Community College
1810 N. Greene St.
Spokane, WA 99217-5399
For general information call:
509-533-7000 or
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