From welding to philosophy, FRCC has a program for you.

Is a bachelor's degree your goal? Our two-year associate degrees (A.A., A.S.) are guaranteed to transfer to four-year public schools in Colorado.

Need skills? Our technical degrees (A.A.S.) and certificates launch you into a career. Some certificates can be completed in just one semester.

Select a campus to see what programs are offered there.  Click on a program name for required classes, contacts, starting salaries, and more.

Forestry and Natural Resources Degree

Offered at: Larimer

A.A.S in Forestry, Natural Resources, Wildlife

60-61 credits
(4 semesters)

An A.A.S. Forestry degree prepares students for a wide range of careers in natural resources. Students gain practical skills in forestry, wildlife, aquaculture, fisheries, wildland fire, and the computer analysis of natural resources. Students participate in community natural resources projects.

Students specialize in one of the following areas. See required courses for:

See Natural Resources course descriptions.
See Aquaculture course descriptions.
See Fire Science Wildland course descriptions.

Forestry and Natural Resources Certificates

Environmental Education

9 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program introduces students to the history, legislation, principles, and goals of environmental literacy and education.

Environmental Education certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Forestry

9 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program introduces students to the principles of forest science, dendrology, forest fire behavior, silviculture principles, and research techniques.

Forestry certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Natural Resources

16 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program builds on the Forestry certificate and covers theory, philosophy, and applications for study and management of wildlife and fisheries resources. Field and laboratory methods are introduced.

Natural Resources certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

See gainful employment information.

Natural Resources GIS

9 credits
(2 semester)

This certificate program introduces students to basic and advanced analytical tools as they develop skills in spatial problem solving.

Natural Resources GIS certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Natural Resources Recreation

9 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program combines lecture and practical outdoor experiences relating to problems and trends in outdoor recreation.

Natural Resources Recreation certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Wildland Fire

9 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program provides instruction on environmental factors that affect the start and spread of wildfire and recognition of potentially hazardous situations. Entry-level wildland firefighters skills are taught. Successful completion of this certificate can lead to a "Red Card," the Interagency Incident Qualification Card to work as a wildland firefighter.

Wildland Fire certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Wildlife

9 credits
(1 semester)

This certificate program covers theory, philosophy, and applications for the study and management of wildlife and fisheries resources.

Wildlife certificate: See required courses by semester.

See list of certificate requirements.

Paid Internship Opportunity

Geo-Launchpad is a paid summer internship open to all community college students to develop research skills for a career in science, engineering, or technology. This eight week program takes place at UNAVCO located in Boulder, CO from early June to late July. Learn more.

Gain Field Experience

This program offers students a variety of opportunities to apply classroom knowledge in unique field settings. Here are just a few examples of some of the locations that students participate in field training. On average, this program utilizes 35 field sites per semester.

  • MacGregor Ranch – This 1,200 acre private ranch is located in the beautiful Ponderosa Pine forests near Estes Park, CO. Students are currently studying the effects that a recent forest health restoration project has had on the Abert’s squirrel, conducting deer and elk population estimations using pellet count survey techniques, and monitoring post treatment conditions using photopoints. Additionally, in odd years, this ranch hosts the field ecology course where students study the effects that elk browsing has had on the hydrology of the region, among other current wildlife and forestry issues.
  • Horsetooth Mountain Park – Our Forestry Field Research class is taught at Horsetooth Mountain Park, where students work in 10 study plots, learning multiple timber cruising techniques, study forest entomology, and become proficient in identifying woody plants, forbs and trees of this foothills ecosystem.
  • Reservoir Ridge – The Range Management and Restoration course conducts a semester long monitoring project in this city-owned natural area just north of Fort Collins. Students study grassland ecology and monitor the effects of disturbance events on the grassland system.
  • Ben Delatour Scout Ranch – On-going forest restoration practices on this 3200 acre ranch provides the perfect opportunity for our fire ecology course to study the effects that prescribed burning and thinning have had in this ponderosa pine watershed. In addition, forest harvesting students get real-life experience developing forest management plans and implementing them by putting their chainsaw and skidding experience to practice.
  • Red Feather Lakes Forest Research – Students conduct forest health inventories, timber cruise, and conduct tracking wildlife surveys in this upper montane forest dominated by lodgepole pine.
  • Cherokee Park – This montane shrubland and forest provides the terrain for learning to navigate with a map, a compass and excellent orienteering skills.
  • Bellvue/ Watson Fish Hatchery – Students in the Fisheries Management class learn aquaculture practices from Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) professionals while utilizing active CPW fish hatcheries and rearing units for labs.

Unique Program Opportunities

Other interesting opportunities available to Forestry, Wildlife, and Natural Resources students include:

  • Honors Options – Students can take NRE 100 and NRE 205 as embedded honors courses. The honors option requires students to conduct independent research projects using wildlife cameras and habitat assessments. Learn more about the Larimer Campus Honors Program.
  •  Equipment operation training– Students are trained in heavy equipment and ATV operation as well as safe operation of chainsaws and other natural resource management specific tools and equipment.
  • Red Card certification – Students can earn a Red Card qualification card.
  • Society of American Foresters – This award-winning student group offers community involvement opportunities, wildlife surveys, forest restoration activities, Christmas tree cut and sales, multiple service projects, and much more.
  • Volunteer Opportunities – Students are actively connected with opportunities to build their experiences through volunteer opportunities in our community. Black-footed ferret spotlight surveys are just one example of the many unique experiences our students take advantage of each year.
  • Internships – Students in the program are connected to local employers to obtain on-the-job training. Internships often are an integral connection for a student’s future employment.

Employment

Students are highly encouraged to obtain summer employment while in the program and upon completion. The majority of students seeking summer employment in natural resources receive positions in the field. Some of the employers include Colorado Parks and Wildlife, City of Fort Collins Natural Areas and Forestry departments, Rocky Mountain National Park, Larimer County Wildland Fire, Larimer County Natural Resources, Boulder County, Colorado State Forest Service, and the United States Forest Service, and other natural resource agencies around the United States.

Forestry Jobs & Salaries

Jobs Entry Average Experienced
Forest and Conservation Technician $28,765
$38,488
$43,350
Forester $44,083
$61,216
$69,782
Forest Firefighters $54,477
$80,215
$93,084
Mapping Technician $33,359
$47,693
$54,860
Park Naturalist $47,652
$70,513
$81,943
Colorado Dept. of Labor & Employment
Occupational Employment Statistics Survey (2017)

Program Graduate Outcomes

  AY14 AY15 AY16 AY17 AY18
AAS Degrees 12 12 8 15 15
Certificates 100 163 106 169 100

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