Become a Tree Care Advisor

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What You'll Do
Tree Care Advisors are dedicated to volunteerism and improving the urban and community forests of Minnesota. Once trained and certified, Tree Care Advisor volunteers are encouraged to fulfill roles as educators, advocates, and facilitators to more effectively help others help themselves. They do this by independently identifying opportunities in their community and tailoring their skills and interests to create avenues for positive change. For instance, they may choose to assist community or neighborhood forestry planning groups by conducting workshops, helping them prepare proposals, and reviewing their plans. They may also help the public with tree-related questions by providing information or directing them to resources. 
Volunteers commit to 25 hours of volunteerism and 4 hours of continuing education each calendar year. To fulfill these hours, volunteers primarily find and create unique opportunities in their community on their own. This ensures their knowledge and skills are tailored to local desires and circumstances. We also offer a limited number of pre-made events to sign up for, such as the MN State Fair Ask A Tree Care Advisor Booth and occasional spring plantings. 
(Note that the same hours are not able to be used twice, or "double dip", with other UMN programs like Master Gardeners or Master Naturalists.)

How to Start

2024 Core Course Schedule


Hear from our volunteers:

What do you think is the most important work you do through the Tree Care Advisor program?  

“I volunteer for a non profit in our community. We have tree give aways twice/year. We select the tree species and listen to the residents of our community who come to pick up a free tree. We advise them about which tree species would be best for their site and preferences.” 

“Reassuring homeowners that they are doing the best for their trees and also informing them on best practices for long term health of their trees.” 

“Helping my small town's public works department take care of boulevard and park trees (we do all the small tree pruning, I recommend tree species for parks, etc.)” 

“Advocate for trees. Plant trees. Try to get the word out to the public. Trees are great!” 



Tree Care Advisors concentrate their volunteer activities in a community-based atmosphere. It is emphasized that the majority of volunteer hours are to be spent in the individual Tree Care Advisor’s community, when practical and possible. Program coordinators recognize that they are not the expert on what may best fit with any specific community. You are that beautiful link and changemaker! This means that you are able to use your drive and creativity to adapt what you learn to prioritize local needs and desires.

As a volunteer, we ask that you complete 25 hours of volunteerism each year. All volunteer hours need to be documented and reported through the online portal: Reporting your hours helps with grant funding to ensure our community and urban forest programs remain healthy and robust!

Here are a few examples of how you may choose to connect with your community:

  • Conducting educational programs for youth groups, schools, neighborhood and community groups
  • Assisting community or neighborhood forestry planning groups by conducting workshops, helping prepare proposals, and reviewing plans
  • Collaborating with research-based programs (Master Naturalists, Master Gardeners, MN Water Stewards)
  • Working alongside tree- and shrub-related organizations such as the MNDNR, Tree Trust, Great River Greening, and garden clubs
  • Helping the public with their tree-related questions by providing information and/or directing them to resources