There is increasing awareness that urban and community trees provide many benefits to the environment, to human health and well-being, and affects the economic viability of communities. As communities and homeowners face the financial challenges of tree damage that results from storms, disease, and pest insects, advocating for the support of these urban trees can be difficult. The Urban Forestry Academy is an informal training program that provides education to arborists, landscape professionals, and members of the public interested in promoting urban trees within their communities. This training is designed to not only teach the fundamental principles of tree biology and plant health care, but to also give people the tools to become advocates for trees in their communities. Weekly lectures and hands-on workshop trainings will be led by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Nassau County staff, with assistance from Cornell University faculty, local arborists, and representatives from other government organizations.
Registration is available for individual sessions at a cost of $40 per workshop.
The Urban Forestry Academy will be a 12-week hybrid program that will utilize virtual interactive lectures and in-person workshop trainings. The dates for the 2022 Urban Forestry Academy will be February 8th - April 29th, 2023. The virtual classes will be held once a week on Wednesdays 7:00- 8:30 in the evening and there will be a total of three in-person Saturday morning workshops with dates and locations to be determined. Participants will be asked to pre-register for a two-hour time slot for the Saturday workshops to accommodate small group sizes.
The interactive lectures will cover a wide array of Urban Forestry topics, from the basic biology of trees to learning how to diagnose common tree problems. Lecture topics may vary depending on the interest of participants and relevance to current environments, but in general will align with the following syllabus:
Week 1: Wood Plants Defined
Week 2: Benefits of an Urban Forest
Week 3: Common Tree Problems
Week 4: Tree Pruning and Tree Care
*Saturday, March 4th: In-person Tree Pruning Workshop
Week 5: Native Species and the Invasive Species Issue
Week 6: Tree Identification 101
*Saturday, March 18th: In-person Woody Plant Identification Workshop
Week 7: Future of Trees: Green Infrastructure
Week 8: Advocate for Trees: Tree Stewardship
Week 9: Urban Environmental Planning
Week 10: Community Projects and Grants
Week 11: Site Assessment for Optimal Tree Health and Long-term success
Week 12: Tree Planting for Success
*Saturday, April 29th: In-person Arbor Day Celebration and Tree Planting
ISA and LA CEU credits have been requested for all Urban Forestry Academy sessions
Completion of Requirements
The hands-on Saturday workshops will consist of field trips to local arboretums and demonstration sites, pruning demonstrations, and tree planting activities. Participants will be required to pre-register for a timeslot during the workshop to ensure small group sizes and ample supervision from staff and other course instructors. The dates for the Saturday workshops will be March 4th, March 18th and April 29th. The location and topic of these workshops is to be announced, depending on weather factors and availability of off-site facility.
Earning the Cornell Cooperative Extension Urban Forestry Academy Certification will provide credibility that can lead to opportunities to speak about the many benefits of trees and provide guidance on urban and community tree best management practices throughout the community.
To earn a certificate of completion, participants must complete the entire course and actively participate in lectures and workshops. Participants who are unable to attend a lecture will be asked to watch a recording of the lecture and successfully pass a quiz relevant to the lecture materials. Participants who are unable to attend a Saturday workshop must provide a written notice to the instructor at least one week prior to the scheduled date and will be asked to participate in an alternative activity. In the event of an emergency absence, participants must contact the instructor within 48 hours and request an alternate assignment.
Participants who successfully complete all of the course requirements will receive an Urban Forestry Academy Certificate of Completion. Individuals who have received their certificate of completion may be eligible to participate in approved volunteer activities with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Nassau County.
Cost of Program
The cost of this program is $250 per participant. CCE Nassau will be offering reduced program fees to Nassau County municipal staff at a price of $200. The minimum age to participate is 18 years old.
Click here to register and pay through PayPal.
Last updated November 28, 2022