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FPAC names Green Dream interns

Aug. 18, 2016 - The Forest Products Association of Canada has named its picks for the Green Dream Internship, a program launched in 2013 to raise awareness among young college and university students about job opportunities in the forest sector. 

For University of British Columbia (UBC) and University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) environmental engineering student Danielle Amaral, striving towards a sustainable and environmentally conscious lifestyle is one of her top priorities.

She is adamant she picked her course of studies with this in mind so when she heard she was one of the interns chosen by the Forest Products Association of Canada for their Green Dream program, she felt it was the perfect opportunity to share some of the innovative practices currently being implemented by the forest products industry.

"During my first year at UNBC, we had the chance to tour Canfor's Northwood Pulp Mill. As the tour progressed, I was taken aback by the initiatives and energy saving projects Canfor was implementing. When I found out I would have the opportunity to work for them this summer in the forestry industry, I was thrilled," says Amaral. "Here was my opportunity to make a difference, one kilowatt at a time."

Since starting her internship with Canadian Forest Products' (Canfor) Northwood operations in May, Amaral has been able to work alongside some of the company's more senior employees to develop strategic plans for reducing the company's energy use. She admits the process is not as straightforward as she first assumed but admires the ingenuity that goes into optimizing Canfor's various pulp operations.

"It is evident sustainability is a part of everything they do at Canfor. From existing processes to the new innovative engineering projects, the staff at Northwood are determined to uphold Canfor's core values of safety, quality and sustainability." Amaral says.

When Thompson Rivers University grad Olivia Watt initially applied for a Green Dream internship the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) was offering, the Canfor Human Resources intern did not anticipate what would happen next.

While working at the head office for Canadian Forest Products Ltd. (Canfor), Watt admits she was “very surprised” and excited when she heard her application was chosen and said, “I couldn’t recall exactly what they even told me.”

Since starting her full-time job in May with Canfor’s human resources department and talent acquisition team, Watt has been fully engrossed with her job’s responsibilities that include assisting with job postings and coordinating interviews. Within this role, Watt regularly interacts with candidates and operations staff and has also been able to learn about various career paths within the forestry industry.

Launched in 2013, FPAC's internship program was designed by FPAC and its members to connect the forest industry with the next generation of workers and help those choosing career paths to become aware and enthused about a career in the industry.

Watt, now a summertime Vancouver resident who will return to Kamloops in the fall to continue her studies in human resources, says she really likes that her internship allows her to integrate the labour market information (LMI) tool FPAC showed them during orientation.

For students like Watt and Amaral who might want to get a head start on planning their job search, FPAC's The Greenest Workforce Job Match Tool is an online tool that can assist greatly with securing vocational employment. FPAC's first-of-its-kind online tool assists with matching job openings at Canadian forest products companies with job seekers as well as provides detailed labour market information about the sector.

The online LMI is searchable at the national, provincial and regional levels, as well as by occupation. This market information aims to help employers make sound business and human resources decisions, assist industry associations and post-secondary institutions to address skills issues and reduce the likelihood of new skills shortages in the industry.

For employers, the Job Match Tool means quick, efficient, access to a national talent pool. All employers in the Canadian forest products sector can post jobs, use the tool to identify candidates, and access trends and other data to help guide company HR strategies.

The new tool is also expected to boost employment by bringing employers and job seekers together more quickly, thereby reducing the lag between an employer's decision to hire and the time that the post is actually filled.

To read about the Green Dream Team's summertime job experiences, visit: thegreenestworkforce.ca/index.php/blog/. To learn more about the Greenest Workforce Job Match Tool, visit: thegreenestworkforce.ca

August 18, 2016  By Forest Products Association of Canada

Danielle Amaral is one of two students picked for FPAC's Green Dream Internship program.

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