Veterans Conservation Corp
Did you know Green
River offers on-site housing?
Easy access to
college resources (such as the Holman Library) and school forest;
The ability to
be part of university-style housing in a community college environment.
apartments with private bedrooms and communal kitchens;
Living with students
from around the world. The residents at Campus Corner Apartments
are a blend of U.S. and international students.
students can live in one unit.
Is Summer School for
Instructors Rob Sjogren and Monica Priebe
invite you on a learning adventure of a lifetime in the Outdoor Classroom.
From beach sands to 7,600 ft. high wilderness ...come backpacking with
us to explore America's choices in outdoor recreation. Compare the opportunities
of both private and public land ownership. Along the way, study our
native Washington trees and flowers, learn plant identification skills,
and discover the three different ecosystems of the Northwest.
3 CLASSES: 20 days
Tree, Shrub &
- 8 credits - NATRS 184
- 4 credits - NATRS 197
Total costs: Tuition
+ $160.00 for meals and expenses, includes the $50.00 non-refundable
We have room for
13 students - FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED
This class is offered
every other summer; next: summer 2017!
WE WILL VISIT:
contact: Rob Sjogren at
(253) 833-9111, ext. 4582 or by e-mail:
Veterans Conservation Corp
A program developed three
years ago, the Veterans Conservation Corps is bringing with it some incredible people, people with the core
values of Loyalty, Honor, Integrity and Respect. Professionals will
want to look closely at this program for two really good reasons. First,
because they volunteer for work! And second because many of these people
are soon to be available for hire.
It’s called the Veterans Conservation
Corps and it’s the result of a conversation between two men, Washington
State Senator Ken Jacobsen and Tom Schumacher of the Washington Department
of Veterans Affairs, from that fortunate meeting legislation was passed
and the Veterans Conservation Corps was created. The purpose of the
Veterans Conservation Corps is to assist veterans by providing volunteer
opportunities on projects that help restore Washington’s rivers, streams,
lakes, marine waters and open lands. How does that help veterans? It
helps in three ways: for starters there are the rehabilitation benefits
to be gained from doing conservation work. Then there is networking
with prospective employers like private consulting companies, city,
county, and federal agencies. And finally it provides educational opportunities
leading toward a degree in Natural Resources, Water Quality, or GIS.
- Read More.
Michael Farnum (pictured above)
originally from Honolulu Hawaii and recently retired from the US Army
and completed the AAS in Natural Resources - GIS at Green River Community
College. Michael’s career goals are to work in research and analysis
with GIS in forestry or wildlife management. Michael is a team leader
with the Veterans Conservation Corps, the Green River Society of American
His military career fostered a passion for the outdoors. The VCC and
Green River College are providing the tools needed to start a second career which will
allow him work in the best office ever made, our forests.
Society of American Foresters Student Chapter:
Community College SAF Student
Chapter website placed second in the national SAF competition.
The goals of the Green River College Student Chapter of SAF are education,
knowledge, experience, and fun. Representatives of the Student
Chapter attended the national SAF convention in Orlando in
October. Student Paula Kaiser created a new Chapter website
which placed second in national competition. The Chapter also
entered the forestry Quiz Bowl for the first time, competing
against university juniors and seniors. They won the first round
and went out in the second round on an appeal judge’s ruling of
the answer. Wait until next year!
Kaiser was selected nationally as one of
eight Diversity Ambassadors for the SAF. Natural Resources-GIS
student Dan Alden submitted a poster “A Canopy
Height Model for the Lincoln Tree Farm, Washington” and was
selected as moderator of the Emerging Technology Poster Symposia
The Green River College Student Chapter hosts “Mentoring Night” which provides
opportunities for students and professionals to discuss careers
and summer jobs. It also annually hosts “Wreath-n-Feast,” a
dinner with South Puget Sound SAF Chapter followed by
wreath-making in December. Each January, student chapter members
attend the SAF Leadership Conference which is always informative
and invigorating. Chapter members attended South Puget Sound
Chapter, Southwest Washington Chapter, North Olympic Chapter,
and North Puget Sound Chapter meetings this year, meeting lots
of mentors and potential employers.
The Student Chapter funded lodging for attendance at the Oregon
Logging Conference, with side trips to the World Forestry Center
and College of Forestry at Oregon State University. The Chapter
organized a trip to the Olympic National Forest, looking at
Forest Service forest management strategies, decommissioning of
roads, and stream restoration projects.
The Washington SAF annual convention in La Conner, WA focused on
opportunities and challenges in uncertain times with
presentations on timber supply, land use, biomass, forest
certification, climate change, and a field trip viewing forest
management and forest practice regulations. The Inland Empire
SAF annual convention in Wallace, ID commemorated the 100th
anniversary of the “Big Blowup” wildfires of 1910 in northern
Idaho. Two highlights were meeting and listening to Bob Salle,
last surviving smoke jumper of the Mann Gulch Fire of 1949, and
a hike to the War Eagle mine where Ranger Ed Pulaski led his
45-man crew to safety when the Coeur d’ Alene River Fire overran
The Green River College Student Chapter is the caretaker of two outstanding
displays. The “Wildfire in Washington” display was up at the
Forest Landowners Expo in February. The “Biomass in Washington”
display has been at Puyallup, Clallam, and Cowlitz County fairs,
SAF meetings, protection organization conferences, and the Lacey
Alternative Energy Fair. Student Chapter members volunteer at
the Washington Society of American Foresters display at the
Western Washington Fair (Puyallup) each September.
The Green River College Student Chapter of Society of American Foresters works
closely with the Green River College Forestry Club. All members of the
Green River College
Student Chapter are also members of Forestry Club, a sanctioned
club of Green River College. Forestry Club and the SAF Student Chapter cut,
split, and deliver firewood at $200/cord to raise money for
activities and conferences.
Forestry Club Officers:
Eric Gustafson - Chair
Michael Stacey - Vice Chair
Eric Oien - Secretary
Amanda Bodenroeder - Treasurer
Forestry Club wins Green
River Community College
of the Year Award for 2009-10!
With an aspiration to
propagate seedlings for restoration and reforestation projects,
and a supplement to the Veteran’s Garden, a greenhouse was
desired for the Natural Resources program. Forestry Club members
contacted Ove Pearson, a local retired nursery owner, who
donated a 28’ x 30’ frame of a damaged greenhouse. The Forestry
Club pulled together a number of donors and sources to complete
the greenhouse for dedication to Ove and Helen Pearson on May
Forestry Club educates on campus and in the community during the
week of Earth Day and Arbor Day, including a display inside the
Student Center and conifer seedling sales and planting. Other
educational activities are a forestry/natural resources booth at
the Western Washington Fair, assistance hosting the 2nd Annual
Family Forest Expo, hosting the 8th annual FFA Forestry/Natural
Resources competition, and a Puyallup High School forestry
Forestry Club provided assistance with “Giving from the Heart”
holiday baskets, assisted a student’s family following a fire,
providing wooden outdoor toys/decorations for the Green River
Community College Childcare
Center, litter cleanups, and providing CPR/First Aid classes to
and promotion include entries in the Buckley, Morton, Auburn,
and Hoquiam parades. It’s 1978 Chevrolet 650-gallon wildland-fire
tender placed 1st place in Logging Support vehicle category at
the Hoquiam Loggers Playday Parade.
Forestry Club maintains a log cabin at the Pat Cummins Managed
Internship (NATRS 294) is your last spring
quarter and a 14-credit course. Students must obtain and work
in paid positions for the quarter or longer. Some even end up
in permanent positions. Employers include federal, state, county,
and municipal agencies, private industry, associations, and consulting
companies. Students have completed internships in Alaska, Washington,
Idaho, Oregon, California, and Wyoming.
The Advisory Committee
is made up primarily of alumni of the Forestry/Natural Resources programs
at Green River. They provide guidance, direction, and suggestions
regarding curriculum, facilities, equipment, instruction, and student
- Chair Heath Yeats, Ranger, Lake Sammamish State Park
- Jeremy Anunson: Owner, Gamble Bay Timber & Construction
- Bob Arnold: Owner, Rapjohn Wood Company
- Pat Cummins: Faculty Emeritus, Green
River Community College Forestry Technology
- Mike Glass: Forester, Olympic Resource Management
- Spring Johnson, Class of 2000
- Brian Karnes: Forester, T.L. Fitzer Company
- Kristi McClelland: Forester, King County Dept. of Natural
Spring Song Petta, Class of 2009, now
studying in Italy
(laminated root rot) Research
Each year’s Silviculture class members are responsible for a research
plot investigating a natural fungus found in the tree roots: laminated
root rot, or Phellinus sulphurascens. The Natural Resources program at
Green River College
is the primary investigator with the Washington Dept. of Natural Resources
pathologists in a 10-year study researching the susceptibility of Douglas-fir
to laminated root rot (Phellinus sulphurascens). This fungus kills Douglas-fir
by weakening the root systems so that the tree cannot take up water
and eventually often blows down. Students have completed the eighth-year
measurements of the Phellinus sulphurascens plots in the school forest. There
have been some Douglas-fir seedlings killed by laminated root rot, but
not enough data has been accumulated at this time to do any analysis.
Manage the Green River College School Forests:
The Natural Resources program, with the help of Forestry Club and
the Student Chapter of SAF, manage the school forests near Auburn
and Enumclaw. Over 160 acres of forest at the Auburn campus—the
majority 115 year-old Douglas-fir with some younger diverse
stands—is managed for education, recreation, wildlife, research, and
revenue. Neighbors, students, instructors, and staff jog the 5 miles
of paths, bird-watch, bicycle, ride horses, fish, and view Mt.
Rainier in the forests that stretch from the back doors of campus to
the Green River. Deer, elk, coyote, owls, bald eagles, hawks,
woodpeckers, and smaller wildlife are viewed and studied here.
Students learn by doing, such as planting seedlings, measuring and
appraising trees, measuring and calculating stream flow,
constructing a bridge or recreational shelter, and observing and
noting the habits of a pileated woodpecker. Trees that blow down in
windstorms are salvaged for Forestry Club/SAF firewood sales.
Pat Cummins Managed Forest east of Enumclaw also has
trails used by recreationalists. Located on the White River with a
large log cabin built in 1978, it is another outdoor classroom, as
well as home to cougar, bear, elk, and smaller wildlife. The
Wildfire classes practice prescribed burning and suppression. Salmon
are released below the cabin by the Corps of Engineers to finish
their migrations upstream. This forest was named for the founder of
the program, Professor Emeritus Pat Cummins.
Oregon white oak, once a native tree of the Washington
prairies, is being grown in two locations at the Auburn school
A worm farm was established with Red Wigglers feeding on
coffee grounds and vegetable scraps next to the Veterans’ Garden
Veterans’ Garden and Greenhouse: The Veterans’ Garden was
created as a place our Veterans could work with their hands and ease
their memories. Sustaining the physical, mental, and emotional
attributes of our Veterans is important to those in Natural
Resources. Ove & Helen’s Greenhouse supplements that endeavor.
Biodiesel was made in a spring quarter “Biodiesel Basics”
class. The Natural Resources program has a biodiesel converter and
is working to move it from
mode to operational mode. The newest 4x4 bus for the program can run
Wilderness Survival—because so many of the students in
Natural Resources spend time climbing, hiking, fishing, and
exploring, sustaining themselves in emergency situations is vital.
Wilderness survival, CPR, and first aid classes are taught by our
experienced students to others.
Manage Lincoln Tree Farm for Tacoma School District:
The Natural Resources program at Green River College manages the Lincoln Tree Farm
for the Tacoma School District. The 320-acre tree farm located south
of Spanaway, WA has a mix of second-growth age classes. It is
managed for K-12 and college education, recreation, wildlife, and
sustainable revenue harvests for Tacoma schools. For example, Green
River Community College
students plan small timber harvests with reforestation
prescriptions, write the application, bid the harvest contracting,
do the compliance, conduct site preparation, replant, and monitor
the new forest.
Camp 6, Point Defiance Park, Interpretative Display:
The Green River College Natural Resources program is installing a new
interpretative display in Bunkhouse #3 at Camp 6 near Tacoma. It
will be completed summer of 2010.
Drew Paganucci, SAF Student Chapter
Paganucci’s background was in construction and he might have been
called Foreman, Superintendent, or “Supe,” but we call him Super.
Drew takes charge when needed without fanfare and gets things done.
He was the Supe for the greenhouse salvage and reconstruction, led
students in cleanup following a fire in a fellow student’s home, and
stepped up as an active Student Chapter Chair.
“I am honored to represent the Natural Resources Department at Green
River Community College. As an older student I was somewhat
apprehensive about returning to school, the instructors and fellow
students of all ages were very supportive and encouraging. The
curriculum is not just book learning, but is fieldwork intensive to
train graduates for real-world assignments ready for work from day
one. I am fortunate to have the ability to bring my life experience
to the department and encourage everyone to join us in this