Careers In Bloom in Interior Plant Sector with Initial Tropical Plants Establishing Roots with College Students

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The continual growth of Initial Tropical Plants’ business requires the care and feeding of young talent who can bloom into horticulture professionals. Since 1985, in a quest to find outstanding horticulture students from around the country, Initial Tropical Plants, http://www.initialplants.com, has been an active participant and sponsor of the PLANET (Professional Landcare Student Network) Student Career Days, http://www.studentcareerdays.org, held this year at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah from March 23rd to the 26th.

The interior plants-at-work business sector requires the nurturing of educated and intelligent young people who are committed to making the world a greener place

The future is “green” in the plants at work sector with North American industry leader Initial Tropical Plants posting its most profitable year to-date in 2005. The continual growth of Initial Tropical Plants’ business requires the care and feeding of young talent who can bloom into horticulture professionals. Since 1985, in a quest to find outstanding horticulture students from around the country, Initial Tropical Plants, http://www.initialplants.com, has been an active participant and sponsor of the PLANET (Professional Landcare Student Network) Student Career Days, http://www.studentcareerdays.org, held this year at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah from March 23rd to the 26th.

PLANET's Student Career Days has grown to become the largest recruiting event and student competition in the industry that identifies many future horticulture leaders. “The interior plants-at-work business sector requires the nurturing of educated and intelligent young people who are committed to making the world a greener place,” said Jeff Mariola, President, Initial Tropical Plants, based in Riverwoods, Illinois. “Year after year, we’ve discovered many talented and motivated horticulture students at PLANET’s Student Career Days who are now thriving at Initial Tropical Plants. As we continue to change the landscape of business interiors across North America, we are championing the pursuit of careers in the rewarding interior plants industry.”

Leah Derrick, Branch Manager for Initial Tropical Plants in Indianapolis first heard about Initial Tropical Plants when she participated at PLANET’s Student Career Day in 2003. After graduation from Cal Poly Pomona with a Bachelor’s degree in Ornamental Horticulture that year, she joined the company as a Service Supervisor in the Boston market where she was responsible for 10 plant care technicians and about 200 clients. In June 2005, she was transferred to the Los Angeles branch where she was Service Manager for the Orange County region and responsible for 300 customers and 14 technicians. Earlier this year, Derrick was promoted to Branch Manager. “What I love most about working at Initial Tropical Plants is that my day to day schedule is never the same,” says Leah Derrick, Branch Manager, Initial Tropical Plants’ Indianapolis region. “I might be working on budgets in the morning and pruning trees in the afternoon. It’s never boring and it keeps my mind fresh. My goal this year is to keep moving forward to ensure that our customers are thrilled with the service we provide. Our branch grows because of our commitment to providing outstanding customer service.”

Student Career Days is an annual three-day competitive event among students enrolled in horticulture programs from colleges and universities across the country. The students have the chance to compete in events that are directly related to the skills necessary for a career in the green industry. The event also offers a Career Fair which gives the students the opportunity to meet prospective employers in the industry and discuss employment opportunities.

“This event is an annual opportunity for horticulture, agriculture and landscape students from colleges around the country to come together for a few days of competition and fun,” said Mike Purcell, Director of Human Resources, Initial Tropical Plants. “Over 800 students attend from over 50 colleges participating in many different events for both individual recognition and team point scores. Each year we hire several students as a direct result of participating in the Student Career Days event. We are also able to lay the groundwork for future underclassmen that learn about our company and become interested in the interior landscape field as an alternative to exterior landscaping.”

About Initial Tropical Plants:

Initial Tropical Plants, Inc. is the largest provider of interior landscaping, design installation and maintenance services in North America. They have earned this leadership position by providing innovative year-round plant programs to businesses that improve the quality of life in the workplace while presenting an aesthetically pleasing business environment. Initial Tropical Plants is a subsidiary of Rentokil Initial plc, a publicly traded international business-to-business service organization based in the UK. For more information, visit Initial Tropical Plants website at: http://www.initialplants.com.

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Nancy Tamosaitis
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