Fullerton Grounds Maintenance (FGM), a leading provider of landscape services in central and northern New Jersey for the past 25 years, launched a 2-year groundbreaking apprenticeship program in conjunction with the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP).
“We wanted to give our employees a chance to grow and develop their careers, while also getting paid. 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,” said FGM owner Scott Fullerton.
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, who has two young daughters, first started landscaping as a way to help his grandmother. He has been with FGM since October 2017.
He jumped at the opportunity to participate in the program. “A lot of people like myself don’t get this opportunity to grow, learn and prove themselves,” said White.
White said 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 owner 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.