What is included during your time at Ulovane
What is included Fees, Certificates, and Uniform:
- All FGASA Fees (assessment, exam, subscription, registration, moderation, manuals, workbooks, logbooks, prescribed literature, and certification) for the duration of the course.
- Conducting necessary FGASA liaison on your behalf, for the duration of your course including your FGASA membership registration and final exam registration
- Wilderness First Aid Level 2 Certificate is included during the Apprentice Field Guide course.
- Apprentice Trails Guide Course (6 Weeks) –
- Includes: Relevant PFTC Unit Standards (Rifle Proficiency), Advanced Rifle Handling, Training and Evaluation of Tracking Skills, and 4 weeks of mentored walking hours.
- We provide Ulovane uniforms including golf shirts, collared shirts, fleece, a cap
- We provide airport pick-ups and drop-offs at Port Elizabeth Airport. Before the course starts and at the end of the course. The rate is dependent on how many others join the transfer.
- Our library is full of reference books for your use at Ulovane Campus.
- As well as access to free WIFI, to make research quick and easy.
Ulovane is not just a place, it is home and that is clear to see in all that we do!
Skills & Experiences included, from day 1:
- During your time with us, we have 2 birding qualified guides and experts on course and they will take you through all aspects of bird identification, flight patterns, nesting, etc on a daily basis. At Ulovane we offer a birding specialization course for existing guides who have the experience to attempt the qualification.
- Navigation and orientation are included throughout the course. It is part of the FGASA study material and our learners need to conduct a guided experience, unassisted, as part of their practical assessment process to show their competence regarding their knowledge and understanding of the road networks and navigational skills.
- We offer extensive 4X4 driving skills as part of our training. This makes part of the assessment criteria during the FGASA practical assessment. The majority of the driving during training drives is done by our learners and they are completely responsible for the vehicles on those days, from preparing and checking the vehicle to washing and cleaning the vehicle after training drives.
- Linked to the 4X4 driving, we offer complete additional vehicle skills subject to our training where, not just mechanics, but all systems of the game viewer vehicle are covered in a classroom session as well as practical training. Our students also write an exam to show their competence and understanding of the vehicle.
- Training in Hosting and hospitality skills makes up an important part of our training and our learners are assigned specific days during the week when they are responsible for hosting meals. The learners design, plan and execute a hosting/hospitality evening for the landowners and managers of Amakhala Game Reserve where they cook, set up, and host the entire evening by themselves.
- Our learners host real guests during their practical assessment game drives which they will not be able to handle if we did not include hosting skills training during our courses.
- A wine-tasting and food-pairing evening with our students during the course assists with hospitality and hosting skills. With 26 years of experience in the industry, it is wonderful to share this important knowledge and skills with new guides.
- We go to great lengths to assist our learners that are interested in photography and wish to grow and develop as photographers. We work closely with some of the top wildlife photographers within the industry who make up part of our alumni and should there be someone with a keen interest we will connect them with a suitable mentor.
- Reserve Management and conservation are also included in the course as much as possible. We work very closely with the Amakhala Reserve Management team and are called upon from time to time to assist with animal relocation or research projects on the 8000-hectare reserve.
- We work hand in hand with the anti-poaching team on Amakhala assisting them with rhino monitoring when on the reserve. We meet with APU members often and have discussions with them. We, however, do NOT include anti-poaching duties with our students, because they are not trained for these duties and it could put their lives in danger, therefor our students do not conduct anti-poaching duties in the evenings.
- Astronomy is part of the FGASA criteria, we do offer many night drives to observe, discuss and study Astronomy.
- We conduct overnight sleep-outs on Amakhala Game Reserve (the 8000-hectare, big 5 reserve amakhala.co.za) we discuss basic survival skills, but give our learners opportunities to manufacture their own survival tools and implements as part of these sleep-out activities.
- During the learner’s time with us at Ulovane, we guide them in terms of writing pieces and preparing media for social media platforms which go out to the public every second week. We also share their incredible images on all of our social media.
- Amakhala and the surrounding game reserves that we visit with our students are fairly unique and provide the students with exposure to different game reserves and guiding styles, which is important in helping the guides choose their future guiding area.
- Every morning and evening briefing will take place to plan the day ahead or the following day. It is important for us that the learners are prepared for the months, weeks, and days ahead. A full program is provided at the beginning of the course, as well as a weekly program is provided and discussed at the beginning of each week. As well as before each day.
- Final feedback and survey session makes part of any assessment process and the personal development of our learners is very important to us. We ensure that our feedback sessions are productive and will assist our students in their careers.
- We assist our learners with any request to help them to plan extra-curriculum activities. These include activities such as visiting nearby beaches and exploring other areas in our surroundings! We are located in one of the most beautiful untouched areas in South Africa and we encourage the students to explore during their time off.
- During the Apprentice Field Guide course, we try our best to get our learners out on foot on big 5 bushwalks at least once a week if possible. On the Apprentice Trails Guide course, the big 5 walks are of course much more extensive and frequent.
- During the Apprentice Trails Guide course, we shoot on a very safe and effective shooting range. All the supervisors on the shooting range are experienced range officers and we follow strict protocols on the shooting range ensuring that the range officer and all participants wear appropriate closed shoes, ear, and eye protection, ensuring that range protocols are followed and only allowing people that have undergone prior training to handle firearms on the shooting range.
- We do not just follow the FGASA syllabus but give you the learner that extra, that cut above the rest, that X-factor.
- No Eskom, No Problem! We operate on solar!
- Accommodation for the duration of the course at a lodge-like campus. The facility has shared accommodation with 2 students per room; the bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms (with hot showers, toilet & basin) and are equipped with furniture, lights, and linen. Our stunning rock face rooms have a great view of Amakhala. They are warm in the winter and cool in the summer – a great place for studying. The new additional rooms are hidden perfectly in the forest area, also ensuite with shower and toilet, very spacious.
- The lecture room includes a large workstation, desks, and chairs as well as two whiteboards and data projectors. The data projector is used for presentations for lessons, as well as for the students themselves to use for their presentations throughout the various courses. We believe that if our students are comfortable and have all they need, it will enhance their learning experience.
- Free unlimited WI-FI is available in the lodge area.
- The dining room area is lovely and spacious and is the perfect spot for everyone to get together and chat over a meal. It is also the perfect venue for hosting guides and lodge managers in the area for one of our famous hosting evenings.
- The chameleon corner is the perfect chill zone for the guides to unwind after a hectic week of studies and rushing around. Couches, and a pool table in an area that can open up all canvas flaps for an in-the-bush feel, are just wonderful for those social evenings when we braai (barbecue).
- Our chef Jacques spoils us with delicious home-cooked meals. We do encourage teamwork in the kitchen and any suggestions are always welcome.
- Mamma Joyce manages the campus laundry where dust, mud, sweat, and grass seeds can be removed from your uniform after a busy day in the bush. We believe that by providing our students with a home away from home feeling, they will settle into life at Ulovane much easier and be able to focus on their studies and future plans.
When it comes to the end…..
- The final day ceremony and function is something that we take very seriously! Our graduations which have been ongoing since 2005, are the perfect opportunity for the learners to share with their friends, family, and colleagues about their experience with us and how it changed their lives. We love our graduation ceremonies and make an extra effort on these days special for that group of learners. This is the day to celebrate achievements and friendships that were made during the time on the course.
- We offer a recruitment service to our learners, for their placements as well as for permanent employment. We do not guarantee employment, because there are so many variables, it is almost impossible to guarantee that employment is going to work out.
- We stay in contact with our students and their supervisors during their placements and where possible we visit them at their workplace.
- Our Ulovane Alumni are very dear to our hearts as we consider all our students as part of our Ulovane Family.