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05 Jul 2022
The Southern African Wildlife College has just received its provisional registration as a private provider of higher education.
This follows on a site visit earlier this year by the South African Higher Education Quality Committee of the Council on Higher Education, which is responsible for the accreditation of higher education training programmes.
“In terms of the regulatory framework, all higher education programmes must be accredited by the Higher Education Quality Committee before an institution can offer such a programme, which in turn leads to a qualification registered on the National Qualification Framework” said Dr Maria Kanjere the Wildlife College’s Executive Manager: Academic Affairs.
The College offers two certificate programmes in conservation management, as well as a number of different training and short course programmes. The certificate courses are the Higher Certificate in Nature Conservation: Conservation Implementation and Leadership, and the Advanced Certificate in Nature Conservation: Transfrontier Conservation Management
Mrs Theresa Sowry, CEO of the Wildlife College said: “Our courses are aimed at producing highly competent protected area managers that are able to manage and conserve their protected areas and associated fauna and flora on a sustainable basis within the stated conservation objectives and in cooperation with local communities.
This formal recognition by the Higher Education Quality Committee of the Council on Higher Education represents a milestone in the College’s history and in its endeavour to become the most sought after Centre of Excellence in Conservation Education and Wildlife Management training in the southern African sub-region”.
Peace Parks Foundation CEO, Mr Werner Myburgh, said: “This is a historic event for the College, as its certificate courses will now be credit bearing and thus enable students to further their studies at other recognised tertiary institutions.”
The Southern African Wildlife College was established in 1997 thanks to the support of WWF South Africa and Peace Parks Foundation that shared the vision of building the capacity of staff in wildlife areas. The campus is located west of Kruger National Park’s Orpen Gate, near Hoedspruit. Peace Parks Foundation has supported training at the College by annually awarding bursaries to students from across southern Africa. In 2004, Peace Parks Foundation also took over the responsibility of covering the College’s operational shortfalls.
Every year students from across the African continent are trained in the essential skills of managing parks and conservation areas. The College’s training programmes have a marked effect on conservation, as graduate students continue to take up more senior positions in many of southern Africa’s most prominent wildlife areas.