Welcome to the School of Forestry

The School of Forestry at Canterbury is the only university department in New Zealand to offer professional forestry degree programmes.

UC commended in quality audit

24 March 2015 A four-year academic audit report has commended the UC on wide-ranging and effective contributions made by students to the university's planning, reviews and services. (read article)

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Forestry: How to apply

How to Apply

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‘Studying forestry was enjoyable because I could see the real-world applications for the skills I was learning...’

Melissa Pendly Studying towards a MForSc
(read profile)

Postgraduate Scholarship in Forest Economics

The School of Forestry is pleased to announce a new scholarship, funded by Scion, for postgraduate study (Masters or PhD) in Forest Economics. The scholarship covers fees (NZ domestic rate only for MForSc) plus a stipend and is for study relating to the economics of New Zealand's commercial forests. General areas of potential research include (but are not limited to):

  • The economics of land use change
  • Profitability of forest growing and processing
  • Trade in forestry products

Applications (.docx, 91KB) for this scholarship close at 5 pm on Tuesday 30th June 2015. Applicants will need to meet the admission requirements for the degree they wish to study towards. International applicants must also meet UC English language requirements.

International applicants intending to undertake the Masters should note that the gap between the domestic and international tuition fee is in the $NZ25,000 range

NZ Dryland Forests Initiative - Supreme winner of the Marlborough Cawthron Environment Award 2015

The NZ Dryland Forests Initiative (NZDFI) project won the Supreme Award, presented at the 2015 Cawthron Marlborough Environment Awards dinner on Friday 13th March in Blenheim. The Dryland Forests Initiative is a commercial research project to select the best eucalypt species to establish a durable hardwood industry in New Zealand.With over $2M invested so far by a diverse range of private businesses, councils and research organisations, including the School of Forestry, the award is clear recognition of a shared vision for New Zealand to be a world-leader in breeding ground-durable eucalypts, and to be home to a multimillion dollar sustainable hardwood industry based on eucalypt forests, by 2050.

Kaingaroa Timberlands Kaitiaki oe te Ngahere Scholarship

Timberlands, on behalf of Kaingaroa Timberlands, wants to encourage students to take up study towards a qualification in the forestry industry, as there are many interesting and varied jobs available to graduates and great long term career prospects within the industry.  Timberlands recognise it is a big hurdle for many prospective students to begin tertiary study, often due to the financial cost, and want to make this easier by offering financial assistance through this scholarship.The scholarship supports tuition fees for up to four years study. Information on the application process and award can be found on Timberlands employment site.

Support for Forest Engineering

The Forest Owners Association are making a generous contribution to help support forest engineering at New Zealand’s School of Forestry, University of Canterbury. FOA Chief Executive David Rhodes and FOA Executive Council member FOA-PresentationGrant Dodson, were on campus to hand over the first cheque to Prof Jan Evans-Freeman, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the College of Engineering. The planned level of support is NZ$100,000 per year for 5 years. Grant Dodson, CEO of City Forests and also Chair of the School of Forestry Advisory Committee, noted that “moving forward, a professional forest industry requires graduates that can make a true contribution to safe and profitable forest operations”.

Prof Bruce Manley, the Head of the School of Forestry, recognises the importance of FOA engagement with the School, “external support is very important in maintaining a successful programme”. There is a separate Forest Engineering programme at the School of Forestry, but forest engineering skills are taught to Forestry Science students as well as Forest Engineers. Industry input into a recent comprehensive review of the programme highlighted the need for more core forest engineering skills for all graduating students, including harvest planning, being able to cost-effectively design infrastructure, understanding environmental standards and, most importantly, being able to effectively manage safety.

“This support allows us to increase our teaching staff in this area for the next 5 years, as well as attract additional graduate students” states Director of Forest Engineering Studies, Rien Visser. Adding capacity not only increases available contact time for students, but will also increase research potential and outreach opportunities such as workshops.

Using this funding the School has been able to recruit Dr. Kris Brown who will start in January 2015. Kris recently graduated with his PhD from Virginia Tech, USA. Chris’s PhD focussed on improved road construction techniques to minimise environmental impacts, but he is excited about expanding his research to include both logging efficiency and safety. The funding has also been used to offer a post-graduate scholarship for either a Masters or PhD student, and the School is discussing start dates for the recipient.

Workshop on Commercial Application of IR Spectroscopies to Solid Wood

Proceedings from the workshop "Commercial Application of IR Spectroscopies to Solid Wood", held on 11 June 2013 are now available. The workshop explored the issues that need to be covered before we can expect Near Infrared spectroscopy (NIR) to be taken up more widely by the forest industry. While the issues are general, those organising the workshop had a specific interest in addressing local issues and uncertainties.You are invited to download an electronic copy of the workshop, (pdf. 1.19 MB).

School of Forestry Office Locations

The main office for the School of Forestry can be found on the 2nd Floor of the Forestry building (north wing), along from the entrances to F3 lecture theatre. The School Coordinator can be found in Room 217 with other academic staff in offices along this wing. The south lab/teaching block for the School has been closed for strengthening and remediation. Staff and students have been relocated to Level 3 of the Rutherford Building (south wing). Please refer to the School's People page for staff locations.

The Graham Whyte Fund

A fund established in memory of the late Dr Graham Whyte. Graham passed away on 29th June 2005, aged 66, after a long battle with leukaemia. Graham was a specialist in forest management systems, forest planning and production forecasting. He was a graduate of Aberdeen and Oxford Universities, a Fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Forestry and a recipient of the Institute's Thomas Kirk Award in 2000. Graham was the first appointment made by Professor McKelvey to the newly established School of Forestry at the University of Canterbury in 1968. He was promoted to Reader in 1981 and was Head of School from 1992 to when he retired. Graham had a great influence on 25 years of graduates from the School of Forestry and consequently has had a large impact on the progress of forestry in New Zealand. Graham will be remembered for his passion about forestry, his fearlessness in debate and his commitment to forestry education.

Graham was aware before he died that this fund would be established and he contributed to the fund. The purpose of the fund, and in accordance with Graham's wishes, is to provide a prize, awarded annually, to the best performing postgraduate student after one year of studies. The invitation to contribute to the Graham Whyte Fund is extended jointly by the New Zealand School of Forestry and the New Zealand Institute of Forestry.

Donations are administered through the University of Canterbury Foundation. See Support scholarships in the Alumni and Fundraising website for details.