Arborist training
An arborist in the training program. Courtesy San Diego Community College District

San Diego Gas & Electric has awarded a $1.2 million, three-year grant to the San Diego College of Continuing Education to train arborists to clear utility wires.

The five-week, tuition-free program provides training to become a skilled arborist who can support California’s efforts to prevent wildfires by clearing trees away from utility equipment and power lines.

Graduates leave the program prepared to be safe and productive arborists on a line-clearance crew. The training encompasses first aid, fire safety prevention, chippers, chainsaw usage, ropes, knots, and climbing.

Laurie Coskey, CEO of the San Diego College of Continuing Education Foundation, said that through the program “low-income San Diegans are entering a high-demand, high-wage career path.”

The arborist/utility line clearance training is open to all San Diego residents 18 and older interested in becoming a professionally trained arborist.


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Ellen Bullock