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How to get Certified
by Tom Mugridge

Q:Our company is interested in how someone becomes a "certified" tree climber. For utility line work.

A: To become certified, you must pass a written exam sponsored by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA.

The exam also includes identification of trees, usually of twig samples collected from the vicinity. Study up on your twigs!

Generally, the exam is administered by an individual chapter of the ISA. For instance, if you are in Ohio, the Ohio Chapter offers a test a couple times a year.

I believe you must be enrolled for the test at least 14 days prior to the test date. Contact the ISA HQ in Champaign Illinois at 217-355-9411 for further information.

Derek Vannice is the Director of Certification, so you may ask to speak with him directly. He can get you connected with what you need to know and do, and help you determine which chapter's "domain" you would fall under. You can also email ISA at isa@isa-arbor.com.

After becoming certified, you can add the category for utility certified arborist. There are many initial requirements to add this category, such as a minimum of 2,000 hours of in-the-field experience working around utility lines, etc. Derek can help get this information to you as well.

Good luck! I congratulate you on your desire to become certified.

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Tom Mugridge

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