In response to the growing threat of invasive pests to Vermont’s forests, state and federal partners  identified a need to train local volunteers to assist with outreach, education, and local surveying and planning efforts. To address this need, the partners developed Vermont's Forest Pest First Detectors (FPFD) program. FPFD volunteers are on the front line of defense against forest pest infestations. This course will cover the importance of Forest Pest First Detectors and what they do; basic information on the life cycle, signs and symptoms of specific pests; how to report suspected infestations; and opportunities for volunteering and educating others in your community. This course will cover emerald ash borer, hemlock woolly adelgid and elongate hemlock scale, and Asian longhorned beetle. Other pests will be covered in future versions of the course.

Who should participate?

This course is designed for anyone who wants to learn more about invasive forest insects, look for them, and educate others about them. This is an introductory level course intended for people with little to no prior experience with invasive insects or who are looking for a refresher to a prior Forest Pest First Detector course. * Please note: no continuing education credits be offered for this course.


By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand and explain the threats posed by invasive forest pests.
  • Identify the host trees, signs and symptoms, and common look-alikes of emerald ash borer, hemlock woolly adelgid, and Asian longhorned beetle.
  • Locate information on and other resources on invasive forest pests.
  • Submit reports of suspect infested trees or pests to
  • Participate in volunteer opportunities to prepare for or address these pests in your community.

Course Dates: February 21 - April 17

Course Details

  • This is a free, self-paced course, designed to introduce participants to basic concepts and resources
  • It is composed of six sections, each with optional exercises to test your knowledge
  • Each section has videos and content that are to be completed on your own schedule

Contact Ginger at or 802-505-8189.

With the newly updated tree warden statutes in place and the constant, emerging challenges with public tree management, the Vermont Urban & Community Forestry Program has developed the Vermont Tree Warden School.

This online course is designed for tree wardens and decision makers in communities to learn how to better manage their public tree resources. Focus will be on understanding the role and responsibilities of the tree warden, identifying trees a public resource, and connecting with stakeholders in your municipality.

Who can join?

This course is designed for all Vermont Tree Wardens (newly appointed or veterans). Other decision makers such as municipal staff, select board members, conservation commission members and interested tree enthusiasts may also attend. Please note the content will focus solely on the responsibilities of the appointed tree warden. See course objectives below.

  • Define tree warden responsibility.
  • Identify partners and stakeholders in public tree management.
  • Identify 3 challenges and 3 opportunities for tree management in your community.
  • Explored VT Urban & Community Forestry resources and documents.
  • Identify strategies and next steps in your municipality’s tree management.
Contact Gwen at or 802-651-8343.

The Professional Loggers Program (PLP) is a voluntary certification program for New Hampshire's loggers. This program teaches basic silviculture, wildlife management, and improving forestland aesthetics. It also teaches forest professionals about laws that govern their work and regulations that need to be followed. Another very important aspect of this course is safety. Every participant receives instruction in basic first aid, CPR, AED and techniques for operating safely and productively. Certified loggers will have the basic understanding and knowledge necessary to improve their working relationship with New Hampshire's forestry community.

Maple Business Planning

Instructor: Mark Cannella (University of Vermont Extension Associate Professor)

This four session course will guide participants through key aspects of preparing a business plan. Each session will review concepts in strategic planning, analyzing risks, marketing and planning improvements. Students will prepare sections of their own plan over the four week time-frame of the course. 

This course runs October 26th  - November 16th 2021 (online archive closes 12/31/21)

Contact Mark Cannella via email with any questions:

The Vermont Backyard Woods Course is designed for homeowners with less than 25 acres who want to learn more about the woods in their backyard: what’s in it, who (wildlife) uses it, and how they can become better caretakers of it.

The course explores the following themes: An Introduction to Your Backyard and Beyond; Getting to Know Your Woods; Backyard Woods Projects; Developing a Backyard Woods Action Plan.

About the Course

  • This is an introductory course, designed to give landowners basic skills and connect them to resources available.
  • The self-paced course is hosted online and is composed of 4 sections. Each section has videos and activities that are to be completed on your own schedule.
  • Participants will be invited to join drop-in webinar sessions with experts.
  • There will be two optional in-person walks.

Who should join this course?

  • Homeowners who own 5-25 acres.
  • Homeowners who want to become more active stewards of their land, but don't know where to start.
  • Homeowners who want to learn general ecology in Vermont.

By the end of the program participants will:

  • Understand why their backyard woods matter, the benefits it provides, and how it contributes to Vermont’s forest landscape.
  • Identify natural history and cultural features in their backyard woods.
  • Identify and rank stewardship goals and objectives for their property.
  • Develop a stewardship action plan with a project schedule and plan for implementing stewardship activities.
  • Increase awareness and connection to resources and organizations available to assist landowners in post-course activities.


Contact Gwen Kozlowski at or 802-651-8343

Forest Farming Online is designed to train technical service providers (e.g., service foresters with government agencies, Extension professionals, forest management consultants), but is freely available to the public. This course begins with one introductory module, which you must complete first. It includes information pertaining to the basics of forest farming and takes approximately one hour to complete. A series of video and webinar clips from the coalition’s YouTube and webinar library have been compiled to present key forest farming considerations such as, what is it?, how do you do it?, what crops are popular?, how do you add value?, etc. Questions are included for you to complete along the way. Module 1 is expected to take approximately one hour to complete and it guides users to videos that follow a specific list of topics in the curriculum. Questions are linked to specific videos or video segments within topics in the outline. You should plan on spending about 20 minutes per topic.

For more information contact: 

John Munsell, Virginia Tech/Virginia Cooperative Extension,

Brent Peterson SREF/UGA,

William Hubbard SREF/UGA

The Introduction to Southeastern Prescribed Fire course is designed to introduce students to the fundamental basics of prescribed burning in Southeastern forested ecosystems.  At the end of the course the student should have a working knowledge of fire law, fire terminology, fire prescriptions, fire safety, firebreaks, smoke management and a basic understanding of how to conduct a prescribed burn. This course is not intended to take the place of state Certification courses, workshops, or experience in the field. Rather, it is intended to give students a basic understanding of the principles of prescribed fire and fire effects. 

eLearn Urban Forestry is a self-led, online, distance learning program geared speciifcally toward beginning urban foresters and those allied professionals working in and around urban and urbanizing landscapes, including service foresters, natural resource planners, landscape architects, city officials and public works employees.  The program is comprised of ten learning modules:  The Benefits and Costs of the Urban Forest; Tree Growth and Development; Urban Soils; Site, Tree Selection and Planting; Arboriculture; Assessing and Managing Tree Risk; Tree Disorder Diagnosis and Management; Trees and Construction; Public Policy and Urban Forestry; and Urban Forest Management.

For more information or to enroll, contact Leslie Boby, Southern Regional Extension Forestry, University of Georgia at