Each month Pro Arb’s apprenticeship feature showcases a young person starting out in the arboriculture industry. This month, we meet Jay Gibbins from Totally Trees
What is your full name, age and job title?
Jay Gibbins, 21, apprentice arborist.
What is your role within Totally Trees?
I get to carry out a wide range of jobs from felling trees, climbing and pruning trees and shearing hedges to dragging brash, chipping and sweeping up. I do what I am told, really! It gives me the opportunity to learn about the whole job, not just the glory bits.
Why did you choose arboriculture as your career?
I volunteered for a bit with a tree surgeon and quickly found that I loved it. Not many people can say that they love what they do.
Did you go to college? If so, where, and what qualifications did you get?
I am at Moulton College studying for a trees and timber apprenticeship. I started in September and am hoping to finish this year.
Which part of your current role do you like the most?
I like that I learn something every day. As each job is diff erent, there is always something new to pick up from the experienced guys. They let me do more and more as I am learning and are always looking for ways to stretch me.
What’s your favourite piece of equipment to use?
I love using my shiny climbing kit – Totally Trees bought me the same kit to use as the main climbers so I’m able to climb using a comfy TreeMotion harness. What are your future ambitions within the industry? I would like to stay in the industry for as long as possible and be really good at what I do.
Is there a structured development plan at Totally Trees for you?
I go to Moulton College one day a fortnight and the company has put me through my chainsaw tickets. I have completed my climbing ticket and am booked to do my aerial chainsaw course in the next few weeks. As I progress, there are more qualifications that fit in with the work that we carry out.
“We were looking for additional staff last year, but didn’t need an experienced arborist at the time. What we have got in Jay is an enthusiastic person who is willing to learn so that we can shape him into the arborist that we will need in the future. In his interview he showed that he wanted to gain qualifications to work in the industry but couldn’t afford them. The apprenticeship is the ideal vehicle for him to learn, whilst we get a willing young worker who we can train in the way we do things.” – Julian Mitchell, Company Director