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Preparing passionate leaders driving change in sustainability and stewardship of the environment.

  —Our Mission

B. S. Forest & Fire Sciences

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About the major …

The B.S. degree program in Forest & Fire Sciences (FFS) prepares students for careers in the protection and management of our forest and natural resources. This degree program name was changed from Forestry & Natural Resources (FNR) to better reflect the curriculum available to students. Any current FNR student can move to the 2021-2022 catalog and graduate with the degree title of FFS.

SAF shieldThe Society of American Foresters accredits the Forest & Fire Sciences program. Also, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) recognizes employment as a forester with the Federal Government upon graduation. 

Graduates qualify for such positions as forester, environmental interpreter, natural resource manager, urban forester, park administrator, park ranger, resource planner, watershed manager, hydrologist, fire and fuels manager, and many other related environmental career areas.

Cal Poly graduates are employed throughout the world: establishing, managing and sustaining forests and urban wildland areas; providing opportunities for a full range of uses; teaching; extension; research; and protecting and managing the environment.


Program Learning Objectives

  1. Demonstrate critical-thinking problem-solving skills.
  2. Effectively communicate scientific and technical knowledge in a professional manner.
  3. Demonstrate competency in scientific and technical knowledge related to forestry, fire and fuels management, and environmental management in the following key areas:
    • Forest Ecology and Biology – watershed, vegetation, and stand classification; analysis and prediction of stand dynamics; disturbance ecology;
    • Measurement of Forest Resources – forest sampling and inventory, biometrics, GPS, GIS, remote sensing;
    • Management of Forest Resources – develop vegetation, fuel, stand, landscape prescriptions and management plans; environmental impact analysis, profitability and valuation analysis;
    • Forest Resource Policy and Administration – present and defend management plans, work in interdisciplinary (i.e., ID) teams, apply forest policies and regulations to management decisions.
  4. Demonstrate proficiency in quantitative skills and information management specific to their discipline areas.
  5. Exhibit an understanding of their professional and ethical responsibilities as forest managers, natural resources managers, environmental managers, including respect for diversity.
  6. Promote life-long learning habits by exposing students to the discovery process of applied research and demonstration projects conducted by the faculty.


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Location: 180-209


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