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Career and Education Opportunities for Forestry and Wildlife Managers in Elgin, Illinois

For those living in the Elgin, Illinois area, there are many career and education opportunities for forestry and wildlife managers. The national trend for forestry and wildlife managers sees this job pool growing by about 8.6% over the next eight years. Forestry and wildlife managers generally compile data pertaining to size, content, and other characteristics of forest tracts, under direction of foresters; train and lead forest workers in forest propagation, fire prevention and suppression.

Forestry and wildlife managers earn about $17 hourly or $35,620 yearly on average in Illinois and about $15 per hour or $32,000 annually on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Life Science Technical, people working as forestry and wildlife managers in Illinois earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Life Science Technical nationally. Jobs in this field include: park warden, conservation specialist, and grazing aide.

There are sixty-one schools of higher education in the Elgin area, including two within twenty-five miles of Elgin where you can get a degree to start your career as a forestry and wildlife manager. Forestry and wildlife managers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years training to become a forestry and wildlife manager if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Forestry and Wildlife Manager

Forestry and Wildlife Manager video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, forestry and wildlife managers compile data pertaining to size, content, and other characteristics of forest tracts, under direction of foresters; train and lead forest workers in forest propagation, fire prevention and suppression. They also may assist conservation scientists in managing, improving, and protecting rangelands and wildlife habitats, and help provide technical assistance regarding the conservation of soil, water, and related natural resources.

Every day, forestry and wildlife managers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for forestry and wildlife managers to oversee forest protection efforts, including fire control, fire crew training, and coordination of fire detection and public education programs. They are often called upon to patrol park or forest areas to safeguard resources and avoid damage. They also train and lead forest and conservation staff in seasonal efforts. They are sometimes expected to decide on and mark trees for thinning or logging, drawing detailed plans that include access roads. Somewhat less frequently, forestry and wildlife managers are also expected to furnish technical support to forestry research programs in areas such as tree improvement, seed orchard operations, insect and disease surveys, or experimental forestry and forest engineering research.

Forestry and wildlife managers sometimes are asked to formulate and supervise development of access routes and forest roads. They also have to be able to survey and map access roads and forest areas such as burns, cut-over areas and timber sales sections and conduct laboratory or field experiments with plants, animals, insects, diseases and soils. And finally, they sometimes have to measure distances, clean site-lines, and record data to help survey crews.

Like many other jobs, forestry and wildlife managers must believe in cooperation and coordination and believe in an agile approach to problem solving and deal with change.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Elgin include:

  • Environmental Technician. Perform laboratory and field tests to monitor the environment and investigate sources of pollution, including those that affect health. Under direction of an environmental scientist or specialist, may collect samples of gases, soil, and other materials for testing and take corrective actions as assigned.
  • Forensic Investigator. Collect, identify, and analyze physical evidence related to criminal investigations. Perform tests on weapons or substances, such as fiber, hair, and tissue to determine significance to investigation. May testify as expert witnesses on evidence or crime laboratory techniques. May serve as specialists in area of expertise, such as ballistics, fingerprinting, or biochemistry.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Forestry and Wildlife Manager Training

College of Lake County - Grayslake, IL

College of Lake County, 19351 W Washington St., Grayslake, IL 60030-1198. College of Lake County is a large college located in Grayslake, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 16,359 students. College of Lake County has a less than one year program in Forest Technology/Technician which graduated four students in 2008.

Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in Forest Technology/Technician which graduated seven students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Elgin, Illinois

Elgin, Illinois
Elgin, Illinois photo by James Jordan

Elgin is located in Kane County, Illinois. It has a population of over 106,330, which has grown by 12.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Elgin, 104, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Elgin cost $156,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred thirty-two new homes were constructed in Elgin, down from seven hundred fifty-six the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Elgin are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, metal and metal products, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 20.5% of Elgin residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Elgin is 12.4%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Elgin residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 56.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Seventh Day Adventist Church and Saint Thomas More Roman Catholic Church are some of the churches located in Elgin. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Elgin is home to the Fox Bluff Corporate Center and the Elgin Fire Station Number 2 as well as Wing Park and College Park. Shopping malls in the area include Wing Park Manor Shopping Center, Tyler Creek Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Elgin can choose from Elgin-Days Inn, Colonial Lodge Motel and Crowne Plaza for temporary stays in the area.