Wednesday, June 18, 2014

New research forester joins SNRE

When Matt Stevens learned he got the position as research forester for SNRE, he bought a brand new truck, loaded his belongings, grabbed his step-father and drove 5,500 miles from upstate New York to Fairbanks. He arrived June 13 and started to work June 16.

"I love everything about Alaska," Stevens said. "There are more opportunities here."

Matt Stevens
Stevens grew up in DeRuyter, New York, on a dairy farm. He earned a bachelor of science degree in forest resources management at the State University of New York. "I started in general studies but I like to be out in the woods so I chose forestry," he said.

 After graduation, Stevens worked for a year in New York as a procurement forester for a lumber company that makes shipping pallets and hardwood flooring.

For two summers during college, Stevens worked for the UAF Forest Growth and Yield program, doing field work for Tom Malone, research forester who retired in April. "I learned a lot from Tom," Stevens said. "I loved it up here. I am looking forward to settling into the job. I really like field work."

He is excited about examining the data in different ways. "I want to be innovative," he said.

"I'm looking forward to getting the ball rolling." In his new job, Stevens will spend summers managing a field crew that monitors hundreds of forestry research sites and winters on data management. He will obtain, record and store data for the Forest Growth and Yield program.

In his free time, Stevens enjoys fishing, hunting and snowmobiling.

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