Career pathways are nothing new for Pickens and FRCC grads Email
Wednesday, November 09, 2016 03:00 AM

Lauren Bloom, Bloom Concrete & Landscape
While the Landscape Career Pathway Program is helping to show more students the career opportunities available in the green industry, the program’s partners have already been training industry professionals for years. The program is getting the word out about great classes and degrees that can lead to a successful and rewarding career—something these pros know firsthand.

Pickens Technical College 
Pickens Technical College has a program in Urban Horticulture and Landscape that has served students for more than a quarter of a century. It also hosts the Colorado Landscape Industry Certification hands-on test twice each year. Successful graduates include:

Lauren Bloom, Co-owner, Bloom Concrete & Landscape (Lakewood, CO): “I love designing and installing landscapes for my clients and encouraging young people to consider our industry. I love my career – and I owe it to the training I received at Pickens.”

Dave Evans, Sales Manager, Sand Creek Wholesale Nursery (Aurora, CO): “I have never had such an enjoyable and rewarding learning experience in my life. At school, I worked hard and also became a Landscape Industry Certified Technician. Immediately, I received many job offers.”

Shelley Kowalenko, Landscape Account Manager, All Phase Landscape (Aurora, CO): “As an account manager, I am responsible for 90 properties to make sure lawns, flower beds and trees are maintained to our customers’ expectations. I never would have held such a position without the knowledge I gained through the Pickens program. It changed my life in ways I never expected.”

Front Range Community College (FRCC)
The Horticulture and Landscape Technologies programs at FRCC are available at both the Westminster and Fort Collins campuses. In addition to two associate degrees, the program also offers ten related certificates that students can earn to demonstrate that they’ve acquired the hands-on skills needed for a career in the green industry. Graduates include:

Hunter Higdon, Tree Care Division General Manager, Lawn Doctor (Fort Collins, CO): “I was a sponge soaking up as much as I could. I found my passion,” he says. Hunter earned an Associate of Applied Science degree, which meets certification standards of National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP).

Kelsie Cady, transfer student to Colorado State University: “I wanted to combine my interest in art with my interest in nature. That led to becoming a floral designer, working on a flower farm, and now my interest in landscape design.” Kelsie’s experience as an intern at award-winning Designscapes Colorado gave her a practical look at her future career.

Read more in this issue of Colorado Green NOW:
The benefit of scholarships extends further than one student
The journey to build a career pathway
Timberline partners with Falcon High School on Career Pathways
Recruiting young people for the industry: what CSU’s Zach Johnson tells parents

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