Forestry as a career
Forestry is an important industry in South Africa –not only because of its significant economic contribution to the country, but also because of the important role it plays in poverty alleviation and job creation in the rural areas. Natural forests on the other hand, have an important effect on rendering environmental services and providing for the rural livelihoods. Forestry as an industry in South Africa contributes significantly to the industrial sector with the forest products value being almost comparable to and sometimes more than some agricultural products. Such significance of forestry will require a critical mass of trained scientists and forest managers including the up-liftment of previously disadvantaged. Internationally, especially in the rest of Africa, the multidisciplinary nature of Forest Science and/or Management as a profession prepares an individual to be well grounded in biophysical processes involved in ecosystem dynamics as well as socio-economic aspects; and so forestry professionals are better equipped to undertake Sustainable Management of the Natural Resource. This makes the option for job opportunities unlimited from being a research scientist, forest manager, conservation manager to a community based natural resource manager.