Graduates of the Career Course at NJ MORE Field Guide College are given the opportunity of a six-month internship at a top safari lodge, setting them on the right track to a guiding career. Student Gino Spano, together with TshuXekani Gumede, is on placement at Lion Sands Game Reserve, part of the MORE Family Collection, and experiencing first-hand what it is like living and working in the bush.
“So far, our time at Lion Sands River and Ivory lodges in the Sabi Sand has been unbelievable. We started with an induction, working in the various departments of the lodge, for example housekeeping, guest relations, service etc. This provided us with a deeper understanding of the inner workings of a lodge.
“After that we got into more of the field work. We were on standby or doing treehouse link-outs, along with supporting research on animals, birds and trees, as well as joining guests on drives and walks. We’ve had experiences that we could’ve only dreamt about before arriving at Lion Sands.
“In the short time we’ve been on placement here, we’ve learnt so much, not only from people in the various departments of the lodge, but most importantly, we’re learning a tremendous amount from the guides and trackers. To see them in action by joining them on drives and walks, we’re learning how they interact with guests, and this is giving us a clear idea of what it takes to be a top guide at one of the top lodges.”
– Gino Spano