Since inception, the college has trained more than 3000 students from southern African countries, including Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe, in everything from computer skills and communication strategies to overhauling a 4x4 and dissecting an impala.
The training offered at the College focuses on protected areas and natural resource managers from Southern Africa who are already in the service of conservation and environmental agencies. It is complementary to other training institutions and is aimed at improving performance across the field in a range of disciplines. The emphasis is on practical, hands-on skills, rather than using a strictly academic or theoretical approach.
A day in the life of a student could contain anything from erecting wildlife management fences to putting out bushfires to containing soil erosion. There are also units investigating and countering poaching activities, treating the crime scene and breaking poaching networks - an important skill for any nature reserve ranger or manager.
Lecturers and trainers are selected from a large pool of natural resource management experts within Southern African environmental and conservation agencies as well as from the private sector. The approach is to, where appropriate, contract practicing professionals with the relevant experience, to ensure that the training is as practical and relevant as possible. The course methodology focuses on outcomes-based instruction, which ensures improved performance of participants once they have returned to their parks.
The College is working closely with other training institutions in Southern Africa such as Technikons, Colleges and Universities, to ensure maximum flexibility of career path whilst at the same time providing courses that closely meet the needs of protected area managers in the workplace.
All courses at the College have been developed in close liaison with conservation agencies and where appropriate in South Africa, will be aligned to the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) to facilitate national accreditation. The College has Full Accreditation with THETA (Tourism, Hospitality and Sport, Education and Training Authority, Provider Accreditation No 613/P/000001/2004). We have the capacity to provide the full range of training on qualifications at NQF levels 2 and 5 in Conservation.
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