Sarah Bailey, a senior studying forest management, is the recipient of a two-year scholarship from Resource Management Service, LLC, (RMS) one of the world’s leading managers of forest investments for institutional investors and the manager of a 50-year timber deed on NC State’s Hofmann Forest. The scholarship aims to promote forestry as a career path for students from populations that have been historically underrepresented in the profession.
In addition to receiving $10,000 a year, Sarah was given the opportunity to do a full-time internship with RMS this summer. Her internship focuses on controlling the quality of forest management operations, assessing land for timber sales and learning from forestry experts.
One of Sarah’s primary responsibilities is cruising timber, where she measures a sample plot of land and estimates the amount of standing timber in the forest. Her favorite part of the internship though is working with loggers to ensure they’re following best management practices, such as not leaving trash or logging debris in ditches or spilling oil on the site. A seemingly simple mistake like accidentally dropping fertilizer into ditches can have grave impacts on water quality and plant diversity.
Sarah is on-site from start to finish and by the time trucks are loaded with wood, she has analyzed every aspect of the logging operation, ensuring mills are receiving the best product.
Scholarships are crucial for some students who wouldn’t otherwise get hands-on experience in their chosen field of study. The RMS forestry scholarship, for instance, has allowed Sarah to attend Society of American Foresters conventions in Oregon and Kentucky, where she networked and created lasting connections with fellow forestry students and professionals. She will also graduate soon with minimal to no debt.
I’ll be able to fully support myself independently so much sooner than I would be able to with this forestry scholarship.
As a student in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources, Sarah said she’s been surrounded by professional development opportunities that have helped her network and navigate professional work dynamics and expectations. From attending Summer Camp to conducting undergraduate research, she’s gained the theoretical knowledge and practical skills to be a successful forester.
Sarah grew up hiking every summer and playing outdoors, so the path to forestry was an easy choice for her to make. Now as a soon-to-be-graduate, she’s debating between pursuing a master’s degree in forest management or a full-time forestry career. Either way, Sarah has the tools and knowledge she needs to excel as a forester thanks to her internship with RMS and her undergraduate career in the College of Natural Resources.