Tree Sparks interviews Isla, a Forest Management and Urban Forestry student from the Scottish School of Forestry (UHI) in celebration of International Women’s Day 2019.

What do you study?

Fourth Year BSc (Hons) Forest Management with Arboriculture and Urban Forestry at Scottish School of Forestry, Inverness College, University of the Highlands and Islands.

Why forestry?

As the daughter of a forester, I got an insight into the industry that the average child doesn’t get. For example, getting to see a huge  harvester and forwarder machine up close and sit in the cab, watching my dad use his chainsaw to cut down trees (always from a safe distance of course) and having the forest to explore and be my playground. Having a childhood filled with these experiences sparked and nurtured my passion and love of forests and the natural environment.

Favourite Tree?

Scots Pine

What do you believe is the biggest challenge facing forestry today?

BREXIT! And all the uncertainty it brings!

What next?

To be in a job where the forest to be my office but that also gives me contact and opportunity to engage with people. I love to share my passion for forests and the wider natural environment.

Advice for future female foresters?

Forge your own path, don’t be discouraged by the lack of career advice and support from schools and do it because you are passionate!