Applications are now open to apply for scholarships to study the Certificate III, IV and Diploma in Conservation and Land Management at the Batavia Coast Maritime Institute (BCMI) in Geraldton.
The scholarships are supported by the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council (NACC) in partnership with Durack Institute of Technology, through funding from the Australian Government.
The newly created scholarships will enable recipients the opportunity to build on their skills in conservation and land management while working on real world biodiversity conservation projects. This includes participating in once-in-a-lifetime opportunities such as training on-site at the Abrolhos Islands and working closely with industry partners such as the Department of Fisheries and City of Greater Geraldton to build networks.
Durack has been delivering training in conservation and land management qualifications for the past five years throughout the Mid West and Gascoyne regions. The skills and knowledge that students gain through these nationally accredited qualifications can be transferred broadly throughout various industries such as agriculture, fishing, mining and tourism which all contribute strongly to the Mid West region’s economy.
All of these industries are susceptible to critical land management issues such as soil conditions impacted by wind erosion and soil salinity and acidity, water quality and quantity, and restoring habitat to maintain unique flora and fauna.
Students who undertake the Certificate II and III qualification will spend most of their time in the field learning practical skills on plant identification, weed control techniques, seed collection, erosion control, fencing, navigation, pest management, plant propagation and site restoration and re-vegetation.
Students who continue their studies to the certificate IV level will develop site management skills for a local area, including determining environmental threats and developing plans to restore the ecosystem. The diploma qualification will give students the confidence to undertake site management and planning at a regional level.
Students undertaking all of the certificate and diploma level qualifications in conservation and land management will be involved with the Abrolhos Islands Restoration project, by undertaking on-site ground works as well as biodiversity monitoring and developing site management plans.
The Abrolhos Islands are a unique chain of 122 islands that lie approximately 70km off the Western Australian coast. The Abrolhos Islands Restoration Project aims to protect and restore native flora and habitats through strategic re-vegetation with local native species, threat abatement measures and improved biodiversity corridor connectivity.
The Abrolhos Islands are home to marine mammals like the Australian sea lion and the bottlenose dolphin. Sampson fish are also common and have been known to be fed by hand. Students may also be lucky enough to witness migrating humpback whales which also inhabit the Abrolhos waters during their migration from around July to October.
Successful scholarship recipients will have 75% of their course fees covered by financial assistance with the opportunity to apply for a re-location allowance if required. The scholarship selection panel will award winners based on academic merit and industry experience, commitment to their studies and passion for the environment.
The closing date for scholarship applications is 16 January 2015, with interviews scheduled to commence 23 January to determine the potential recipients. All courses will be starting in early February 2015.
For more information about these scholarships, visit the Durack website www.durack.edu.au or contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (08) 9956 2892.