Professionalism  - To know, do, and support at a high level, a chosen field or activity.  Let us look more closely at these requirements for professionalism.  To know means to understand at a high level the information that serves to define the field of activity.  Tree professionals must understand a tree.  That is the basic building block for the profession.  The understanding should be at the highest level of information available.  This does not mean that the person must agree with all the information, but it does mean that the person should at least be aware of the information.  Knowledge is the cornerstone for any profession.   A person must understand the parts that make the field or activity a profession.   More on this later.  The next word is "do," or skill.  This is the art.  A person must be able to perform- do- the activities associated with the field or activity or direct their performance (for the slightly older set!) at the highest standards recognized for the activity.  How to climb a tree is an example.  This is a difficult activity, but it must be done, and it must be done in a safe and effective way to get the job done.  This does not mean that every person who is a tree professional must be able to climb a tree.  It does mean that those who can not climb must still be aware of the importance of climbing and know something about this activity.  A professional is aware of all parts of his or her chosen field.  The third word is "support" or a better word would be dedication.  The professional must support his or her chosen field.  There must be a dedication to the field or activity.  The dedication must bring with it a proud,  or good feeling and a willingness to help the field or activity grow in stature.  A person who destroys trees only for profit is definitely not a professional.  The greatest threat or potential "disease" of any profession is the "pathogens" that are constantly there only to do what pathogens do; drain energy-money-from the system and return nothing back.  Pathogens are part of all systems. They will never be eradicated, but they can be reduced in numbers, and controlled. One way to control them is through licensing.  But, meaningful licensing will not come until we have an education system available which will properly train people in all parts of the profession.  Then a qualified group must be available to measure the understanding and skills of those seeking a license.  Licensing without a sound education system and a qualified measuring group, is useless.  Now, back to tree biology.  We believe that the lack of understanding of tree biology is the major problem within all fields or activities associated with trees!  Advancement in all tree professions will come when a better understanding of tree biology comes.  Modern technology has moved us to the near limits of harvesting trees and utilizing wood, and to the new limits of mechanically planting, pruning, (?), spraying, and injecting trees.  Yet, it seems that much is still missing.  We say that the missing ingredient is basic tree biology!  And, when we fill that void, all other parts of the tree professions will advance rapidly. 

Quiz's for people who claim to be a professional or expert.

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