Kristie Paki Paki

'The School of Forestry turns out confident and capable students...'

  • Kristie paki paki

Bachelor of Forestry Science

Estate and Environmental Support Planner, Nelson Forests Ltd.

With a combination of academic and practical aspects in UC’s Forestry Science degree and good employment prospects upon graduation, Kristie knew that the Bachelor of Forestry Science was for her.

‘I decided to study Forestry Science at university because it was an interesting and broad degree that covered both science and management papers,’ she explains. ‘The forest industry supports the degree and companies often provide students with holiday work. I felt that the opportunity to gain work experience along with an academic qualification would give me a good chance of getting a forestry-related job when I completed my degree.’

‘The School of Forestry at UC provides an excellent learning environment and lecturers are dedicated to ensuring that the School turns out confident and capable students who will make a positive contribution to the forest industry.’

After graduating Kristie joined Nelson Forests as a Harvest Planner, formulating operational harvesting plans for designated forest blocks.

Kristie explains, ‘my role involved paper planning, three dimensional payload and terrain analysis, field validation and roading and land surveying. I was also responsible for the on-site monitoring and supervision of earthworks and harvesting contractors. The company has a "circle of ownership" policy where the planners are responsible for implementing their harvest plan. My other responsibilities included Resource Consents and Historic Places Trust Authorities, GIS mapping and facilitating the safety of the harvesting crews.

‘I found all aspects of my job rewarding, in particular working with the harvesting contractors and their crews. I admire them for the work they do, their commitment to safety and how they approach the day to day challenges of harvesting.’

Later Kristie returned in a part-time capacity as an Estate and Environmental Support Planner, to juggle career and family. Her role supports the operational staff by preparing resource and building consents, neighbour agreements, and Historic Site Authorities.

She is also carrying out special projects, such as improving threatened species management within the estate, a company carbon foot print study, and environmental monitoring and auditing.

‘My background in harvest planning has provided me with the experience and knowledge to easily slot back into this operation support role after returning from maternity leave. Nelson Forests has been extremely supportive,’ she says.

Although she has a passion for the harvesting side of forestry Kristie also has a keen interest in GIS. For her this area is an opportunity to gain skills that she can utilise in other areas outside of the forest industry. Kristie specialised in production forestry in her degree and encourages future students to focus on their own interests.

‘By being strategic with your elective subjects you can tailor your Forestry Science degree to focus on the areas that you are most interested in,’ she says.

‘If you like the idea of gaining a valued academic qualification as well as meeting people who you are likely to be friends with, and remain in contact with, throughout your professional career - then this is the degree to enrol in.’

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