When a Prince George conference exceeded its financial expectations, the organizers invested the surplus in Prince George youth.
The Association of BC Forest Professionals (ABCFP) held its annual general meeting in Prince George last February.
"We never try to make a profit," said Prince George's Ed Morris, co-chair of the organizing committee. "We were very well supported by sponsors and had some money left over at the end of the day. The legacy will go to a number of young professionals."
A purse of $8,171 will be added to the ForesTrust account, an education fund for students in the forestry professions. It will be split evenly between CNC and UNBC to offset the expenses of students in those local training centres.
These funds from ABCFP are in addition to the $4,562 raised at the conferences silent auction that were donated to ForesTrust earlier.
UNBC professor Kathy Lewis said tuition and accommodation costs have gone up for students since her days as an aspiring forestry professional but the wages in applicable summer jobs have not. Bursary endowments are more important than ever to attract new students to the forestry fields.
She added that the list of Prince George students who have been past recipients of ForesTrust bursaries are all still employed in the forestry sector, making this contribution by the ABCFP all the more beneficial to the industry.
CNC instructor John Neumann added that the availability of financial support is often the deciding factor for a student making choices between professions. Across North America and Europe, applications have fallen off in recent years for students entering natural resources professions, so added help on the cost was important to the overall health of professional foresters' ranks.
The ABCFP's next conference, their 66th annual, will be held in Kelowna from Feb. 11 to 14.