Training the Next Generation of Conservationists

Vulcan EarthRanger is heading off to college.

Thanks to a new partnership between EarthRanger and Southern African Wildlife College (SAWC), the next generation of conservationists in Southern Africa states will receive training in the technology needed to help protect wildlife.

“What is clear across many, if not all of these [conservation] challenges, is that the conservation industry could benefit greatly from more efficient collection and use of good quality data,” said Dr. Cleo Graf who leads development at the SAWC’s Applied Learning Unit.

With the SAWC’s help, the college will help make EarthRanger more accessible by expanding the local capacity to train, deploy and provide ongoing support of the tool. The partnership will also equip the college’s conservation and natural resource management students in the latest conservation technology to serve communities across Africa.

“Technology is becoming an increasingly vital part of wildlife conservation and it’s the cooperation and involvement of companies like Vulcan that make it possible to expand access to training for rangers and conservation professionals,” said Dr. Graf.

EarthRanger is an online software solution built to give protected area managers the information they need to understand and protect some of the world’s most endangered species. The software combines information from radios, animal collars, vehicles and more into a one-stop, real-time data hub. Through EarthRanger, protected area managers and rangers have a bird’s eye view required to take immediate, proactive actions to fight poaching and reduce human-wildlife conflict.

Technology is becoming an increasingly vital part of wildlife conservation

Dr. Cleo Graf, Southern African Wildlife College

Since its inception in 1996, the SAWC has trained nearly 18,000 students from 56 countries across various conservation education and training programs. The goal of the college is clear: equip tomorrow’s conservation leaders with the knowledge and skills they’ll require to conserve and protect some of the world’s most biologically diverse areas. Today, graduates of the college are managing or conserving over 100 million acres.

“We are thrilled to work with a world-class institution dedicated to education, skills development and wildlife conservation using an applied learning approach,” said Bruce Jones, Partnership Manager at Vulcan. “South Africa is quickly becoming an innovation hub for conservation technology in the sub-Saharan region and Vulcan is proud to partner with SAWC to test, monitor and provide more protected areas with the training and resources they need to prevent and mitigate wildlife threats.”

Courses teaching EarthRanger will begin in SAWC’s classrooms starting in 2020.