Fullerton Grounds Maintenance, a provider of landscape services in central and northern New Jersey, has launched a two-year apprenticeship program in conjunction with the National Association of Landscape Professionals, Fairfax, Virginia.
“We wanted to give our employees a chance to grow and develop their careers, while also getting paid,” says FGM Owner Scott Fullerton. “We truly believe in investing in our employees and their professional goals. We are aiming to develop the next generation of leadership in this industry.”
The apprenticeship program provides hands-on career training provided by an experienced mentor. Participants can also earn college credit, paid for by FGM, and a landscape management certification that can be used anywhere in the United States. FGM is one of the three landscape companies in New Jersey to offer employees the opportunity to participate in the new NALP program.
Everett White, 31, is one of the participants in FGM’s inaugural apprenticeship program. White has been with FGM since October 2017 and says he jumped at the opportunity to participate. “A lot of people like myself don’t get this opportunity to grown, learn and prove themselves,” says White.
White says things are “clicking” as he combines the more in-depth apprenticeship curriculum along with his daily landscaping duties.
“Now you get a better understanding of jobs you are doing,” he says, from budgeting, to reading blueprints to the different plants themselves.
During the apprenticeship program, participants will have one-on-one interaction with Scott Fullerton. They will finish the program with a certificate in Landscape Management and options on where they want to focus their careers in one of the company’s divisions: grounds maintenance, design/build or residential services.
FGM’s inaugural apprentice class, which consists of five team members, began their field training in January. The program requires 2,000 hours during a two-year period.