News and Blog Articles
News and Blog Articles
When you go to the doctor because you don’t feel well, how do you know you’re in good hands? Maybe someone you know and trust recommended this doctor. Maybe you went to a clinic and just got the first doctor available. Either way, you still trust the doctor to take care of you. Why is that?
Doctors, by nature of their profession, hold some kind of degree in their field. They have years of experience learning and subsequently proving their proficiency, and years of experience treating patients. You trust the “M.D.” to mean this person is qualified to do their job, and do it well.
So when you hire a tree service, how do you know that your trees and other flora are in good hands? The ISA, or International Society of Arboriculture, offers a variety of credentials and certification programs that serve a similar purpose of your doctor’s medical degree. Certified arborists have taken the time to learn about their field, prove their proficiency through examinations and rigorous course work, and have years of experience to back up their qualifications.
Your trees deserve the same care and attention you’d want for yourself. When you hire a tree service, choosing someone certified in tree care is like choosing a medical professional who has been to med school—someone you can trust.
What is the ISA Certification?
The ISA began the arboreal certification program in the 1980s to improve the standard of the tree care profession. Creating this qualification established a baseline of knowledge for all tree care professionals, which in turn enhanced the spread of proper tree care across the nation.
Who is an ISA-Certified Arborist?
What does it take to become an ISA-Certified Arborist?
To begin this certification process, you must first hold a degree in arboriculture, horticulture, landscape architecture, or forestry from an accredited university, and secondly, you must have three or more years of “full-time, eligible, practical” experience in arboriculture. Scott Rushing proudly holds a Bachelor’s in Agricultural Education from the University of Georgia and has worked in arboriculture in the Athens-Oconee area since 2008.
The certification track itself includes written and practical training and examinations, ensuring that every individual who goes through the process is well-versed in all aspects of arboriculture, including (but not limited to): “basic tree biology, tree identification and selection, tree-soil-water relations, tree nutrition and fertilization, tree planting and establishment, pruning concepts and techniques, cabling, bracing and lightning protection, problem diagnosis and management, tree preservation on construction sites, climbing and safe work practices, and tree risk assessment.” The final written examination features approximately 200 questions on all of these subjects.
Continuing Education Units come in a variety of forms, including things such as college courses, workshops, conferences, webinars, safety trainings, online learning modules, and other opportunities approved by the ISA.
Why choose a certified arborist?
Certified arborists are trained in how to assess any given trees health, potential for failure, and livelihood, and is also qualified to offer courses of action to mitigate potential failure, reduce risk, and remove trees entirely. They are also well-versed in the proper vocabulary to accurately describe tree-related situations; arboriculture is an increasingly scientific field that is, day by day, becoming less dependent on vague language and ambiguous practice and more dependent on factual, measurable components. This ensures that both the arborist and the customer are confident that both parties understand the necessity and potential ramifications of any given treatment.
What happens after certification?
In addition to education, training, and testing, ISA certifications come with a Code of Ethics that all credential-holders must abide by to ensure the credibility and reliability of the tree care service profession. The Code sets minimum standards for work quality, but also establishes the level of honesty, integrity, and honor that all certified arborists are expected to live by.
What does certification mean to us?
If you’re interested in learning more about the services we provide, please check out our website, or contact us directly for more information or to schedule a free estimate!
Emily Casuccio is sister and sister-in-law to Rebekah and Scott Rushing, and has over half a decade of experience in copywriting, copyediting, proofreading, and developmental storyboarding. She's worked with both published and undiscovered authors on both fiction and nonfiction, and takes pride in supporting local businesses. Her passion lies in the written word and helping authors of all capacities realize their dreams and achieve their fullest potential. To learn more about her, read samples of her work, or contact her, visit her online portfolio.