Grafton forest worker wins TAFE award
Forests NSW Grafton-based supervising forestry officer (SFO) Matt Beetson has been named North Coast TAFE Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year.
Mr Beetson, 21, is now a Forests NSW SFO after completing his Certificate III in Forest Growing and Management in 18 months instead of the usual two years.
He is now competing for the NSW title and if selected as a finalist will attend the award night in Sydney in August.
“The next part of the process is an interview in Sydney in July,” Mr Beetson said.
“The North Coast award ceremony was held in Coffs Harbour and it was great to see my Forests NSW workmates and the North East regional manager Craig Busby come along to support me.”
Mr Busby said Matt worked hard to complete his TAFE Certificate III in Forest Growing and Management and this, along with his willingness to work and good attitude helped him win the SFO position.
“He has absorbed all the advice he has been given and has become part of the team,” Mr Busby said.
Mr Beetson was an Aboriginal Employment Strategy trainee with Forests NSW North East Region before he gained the 12-month position as a temporary SFO from applicants across Australia.
Matt, who used to work at Grafton abattoir before joining Forests NSW, is in charge of a range of timber harvesting operations in the Clarence region, working with harvesting contractors, performing pre-harvest tree marking, undertaking ecology surveys, organising hazard reduction burns and fighting bush fires.
As a trainee he worked in native forest operations and planted forest operations before starting his new role in native forests. His aim is to continue in a full time position with Forests NSW.
Media contact: Howard Spencer 02 66568825 or 0428 696672