Certificate III Outdoor Recreation

Graduate Profile : Steve Wilks

Where are you currently working?  I have just finished a season with Senna and Stan Ellerm at Tasmanian Hikes.  Most of my work was guiding on their three night camping tour of Maria Island.

What do you love most about your job?  I love talking to the guests about their travel experiences and future travel plans.  A lot of our guests are well-travelled and it is the out-of-the-way and off the beaten track experiences I love to hear about.  Also I love helping the guests see and experience the Tasmanian environment and ecology.  No matter how many times you walk along the same track – we always see something different and something unexpected.

What training did you undertake with TasTAFE?  I completed the Certificate III & IV in Guiding and Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation during a very busy 2015.

What did you value about your training at TasTAFE?  The hands on experience and the opportunity to push myself outside my comfort zone.  Also the close involvement with the experienced and passionate teachers.  I also enjoyed the diverse group of fellow students from so many varied backgrounds and life experiences.

How has your training helped you with your Guiding career?  In so many ways – hard skills like using MSR stoves, catering, learning to find that quirky, intriguing set of facts about the plant or bird or rock that people encounter.  Then there was all the focus on the soft skills – people management in a nutshell.

What is your most memorable moment you have experienced on a trip?  I worked on an Overland Trip last January with a group of seven guests including a lady from Cardiff in Wales.  She was absolutely astounded and thrilled to see Wombats, Echidnas and Pademelons in the wild.  It was really rewarding to see her enjoy her trip so much.

If you could invite anyone on a trip, who would it be?  I think it would be someone who has spent their entire life in a large city.  Someone who has never seen a rainbow, a Scarlet Robin perching in the sunshine or an Echidna foraging for insects. Someone who has never seen a crystal clear wave breaking on a deserted beach, someone who has never seen a hundred Scoparia in full flower, or someone who has never seen thousands of stars on a dark cool night.

If you could give one piece of advice for someone contemplating a career in the outdoors, what would it be?  Send an email to the great staff at TasTAFE and organise to have a chat to one of them.  You will know in your heart whether you want to be a Guide or an Outdoor Instructor, so don’t die wondering.  Give it a go.  You will find your niche in the outdoors and when you do you will “never go to work again” – you will just do what you love and help others experience it too.

 RTO Code: 60142

Hazards Traverse

Two weeks ago our Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation students enjoyed a two-night trip to the Freycinet Peninsula, where the group further developed their bushwalking and navigation skills.  Accompanied by Cody McCracken of Wild Pedder and TasTAFE Teacher Renee Harrington, the group were blessed with glorious weather and stunning scenery.

Departing from Sleepy Bay, the group followed the coastline to the summit of Mt Parsons and then ascended Mt Baudin where they enjoyed a night sleeping in a cave.  The next morning saw student’s abseiling down a cliff which put many participants out of their comfort zone but proved to be a very rewarding experience.

After descending back to Sleepy Bay, the group continued on to Wineglass Bay and were greeted by a friendly wallaby on the beach and a pod of dolphins in the bay.  The students spent the night sleeping under a blanket of stars on Wineglass Bay beach.

The final day consisted of a small group of students hiking up to the Mt Graham lookout, whilst others enjoyed the glorious beach before returning to the bus and back to Hobart.

The trip was a great opportunity for students to demonstrate their leadership and guiding skills, occupational health and safety policies, cooking, food hygiene practices, weather interpretation and off track navigation.

 

Graduate Profile : Sara Freeland

Where are you currently working?  The Maria Island Walk and The Freycinet Experience Walk.

What do you love most about your job?  Connecting people to the land!  It’s the history of a place, the links between flora and fauna, the subtle changes in vegetation; all these little elements add up to make a place really special and the best thing about being a Guide is sharing this knowledge with people and connecting them to the place they are in.

What training did you undertake with TasTAFE?  Certificate III  and Certificate IV in Adventure Guiding  in 2016.

What did you value about your training at TasTAFE?  The knowledge!  My training really was one of the best years of my life and it completely opened up my eyes to the world around me.  From the training I have developed a real passion for the environment and I know my life will now take a completely new course because of my year at TasTAFE.

How has your training helped you with your Guiding career?  Again, the knowledge.  As I said before, understanding a place really brings it to life and I couldn’t do that without the amazing learning I received at TasTAFE.

What is your most memorable moment you have experienced on a trip?  Getting guests to the summit of Bishop and Clarke. It’s a stereotypical moment, but people underestimate their abilities and it’s always amazing coaching people to the top.  It’s a really rewarding part of the job, to see people’s faces on the summit and the pride they have for themselves.

If you could invite anyone on a trip, who would it be?  A Tasmanian Aboriginal Elder from before the arrival of the British.  It would be an incredible insight into the traditional customs of the Tasmanian Aboriginals.  How amazing would it be to learn from an elder the stories of the people and to develop a better understanding of the intricate connection they had to the land.

If you could give one piece of advice for someone contemplating a career in the outdoors, what would it be?  Stay passionate!  The guiding course can give anyone an amazing foundation of knowledge, but those that keep learning and continue to question what’s around them are the best guides.

 RTO Code: 60142

Graduate Profile : Karl Villanueva

Where are you currently working?  I am currently working at Freycinet Experience Walk and Tarkine Trails but in April, I start with World Expeditions on the Larapinta Trail in the Northern Territory.

What do you love most about your job?  There are so many things, I honestly can’t choose one.  Firstly, there are the people I get to meet.  Every single person has got an interesting story to tell and they are just waiting for someone to listen.

Next are the people I work with – they become your best friends and family and you miss them when you finish a trip and you look forward to the next one with them.

Finally, but not least, are the ever-changing destinations.  I have been asked a few times ‘Doesn’t it get boring?’ but my response remains the same.  I love the detail – I love the smallest things that make it so changeable and so beautiful – the little things that without a guide, you would miss.  I have had the chance to see every flowering plant from late Autumn through Summer to Autumn again, but most of my guests will only see one part of that process – but I’ve experienced the whole cycle.

What training did you undertake with TasTAFE?  I studied the Certificate III in Guiding and the Certificate IV in Adventure Guiding and also the Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation in 2016.

What did you value about your training at TasTAFE?  Where to start!  The trainers for one!  They were amazing –  they have had first-hand experience and pass on first-hand knowledge of the industry which is invaluable.  Also the opportunity to network and meet people and future employers in the industry.  They really give you the chance to jump into your career with both feet!

How has your training helped you with your Guiding career?  In so many ways!  I came from a background that couldn’t tell the difference between an introduced weed and an endemic plant, or even what endemic was, but now I know them both!  The biggest thing was just how much I had to learn and just how much appreciation and love I could have, for what I was doing.  It’s so awesome to imagine where I could be in five or ten years.

What is your most memorable moment you have experienced on a trip?  I have had a few but on two occasions, guests have told me that I made the right decision to change careers and to keep it up and never doubt my decision – that was really humbling to hear.

If you could invite anyone on a trip, who would it be?  David Attenborough without question.  It sounds clichéd, but he is my hero.  That being said, I’ve recently been reading a book by the Dalai Lama and he would be an extremely close second!

If you could give one piece of advice for someone contemplating a career in the outdoors, what would it be?  Stop thinking about it and do it!  You will never regret it, but you will always envy the person you know that actually did!

 RTO Code: 60142

White Water Introduction

Two weeks ago the Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation students participated in an introduction to White Water Rafting.

The students spent two consecutive days on the Lower Derwent River starting from Plenty Bridge to Hayes.  With the intention of introducing students to the units: Guide a Raft on Moving Water and Demonstrate Self-Rescue Skills in Whitewater, the group participated in a variety of activities.

As leaders of the activity, Millie Legge and Alex Coutts were able to demonstrate awareness and understanding of the following units: Planning Recreational Activities, Guiding Outdoor Recreation Sessions, Facilitating Groups, Providing Customer Service and Following Occupational Health and Safety Procedures.

The whole group were exposed to rafting equipment/clothing and briefings; rafting safety; rafting procedures; river signals, reading river water features; personal orientation on a river and floating positions.

The students were also instructed in paddle strokes including forward and back paddle, forward and back sweep, draw stroke, rudder and J-stroke techniques.  The students also participated in a flipping a raft, re-righting the raft and defensive and aggressive swimming in white water.

Graduate Profile : Mackenzie Reekie

Where are you currently working?  I am currently working for the Tasmanian Walking Co. guiding on the Overland Track (Cradle Mountain, Lake St Clair Wilderness World Heritage area) and at the Bay of Fires (Mt King William National Park).

What do you love most about your job?  So many aspects of the job I absolutely adore!  Being in environments that are aesthetically beautiful, ecologically diverse and quiet.  It’s great introducing guests to these areas and seeing their passion and confidence grow!

What training did you undertake with TasTAFE?  I undertook Certificate III in Guiding in 2016. When I passed this, I went on to the Certificate IV in Adventure Guiding and Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation.

What did you value about your training at TasTAFE?  The knowledge and experience that the teachers have to offer is a significant highlight.  Having all been Guides before (back in the good ol’ days!) they were able to not only teach us interpretation and area specific information but ‘secret guide’ tricks that accumulate over a Guiding career.  Furthermore it’s a great avenue to develop yourself and make friends!

How has your training helped you with your Guiding career?  It has helped in many ways but predominantly interpretation, group management and hospitality.  The first few trips I wasn’t overly confident but I had the knowledge.  Now my confidence has developed and things are going well.

What is your most memorable moment you have experienced on a trip?  I have been fortunate and had many great, memorable trips!  Sitting on top of Hartnett Falls on a 26°C day (warm for the Overland Track) swimming with guests and my Co-Guide.  I remember feeling super happy and thinking “It doesn’t get any better!”

If you could invite anyone on a trip, who would it be?  David Tennant – he would be lots of fun and it would be great playing charades with him!

If you could give one piece of advice for someone contemplating a career in the outdoors, what would it be?  Find a place you love and share it with others.  In doing so you will fall more and more in love with it.  As the saying goes:

“If you find a job you love, you will never have to work another day in your life”.

 RTO Code: 60142

Graduate Profile : Holly Schorta

Where are you currently working?  I am currently working in Tasmania for the The Maria Island Walk and the Bay of Fires Lodge Walk.

What do you love most about your job?  There are so many things to love about the job; but if I had to think of a couple, it would be the buzz of being able to share my knowledge and love for Tasmania with people from across Australia and the world.  Also having the opportunity to facilitate and encourage people to get out of their comfort zone, is a great privilege.

What training did you undertake with TasTAFE?  I completed my Certificate III and IV in Guiding in 2016.

What did you value about your training at TasTAFE?  The teachers and students alone made the whole course worthwhile.  It’s so lovely to have teachers who show such passion and love for what they are teaching, who are willing to share their first-hand experiences of the job.  I also can’t forget to mention the amazing peers that I was surrounded by for the year – friends that I will treasure for a long time.

How has your training helped you with your Guiding career?  I felt well prepared going into the industry, knowing what to expect (the people, the cooking, the cleaning, the interpretation).

On my first ever guided trip, although I was extremely nervous about the new experience, I was able to look back on all of the teachings that TasTAFE provided.  It also helped my confidence in being able to talk to people who I had never met before.

What is your most memorable moment you have experienced on a trip?  There are far too many memorable moments to name just one but the biggest highlight for me is seeing people’s faces when they reach the summit of mountains, which makes the climb worth it!  I also love seeing people faces when they go for a swim as they don’t expect the water to be so ‘fresh’.

If you could invite anyone on a trip, who would it be?  My mum, because she’s a superstar and so she can also see first-hand what I do for a job.

If you could give one piece of advice for someone contemplating a career in the outdoors, what would it be?  I believe that guiding is all about how you enrich someone’s experience in a particular environment.

“I’ve learnt that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”  Maya Angelou

This quote reminds me that I have the ability to shape and enrich how people feel about the location that I am sharing with them.  Giving information about the flora/fauna, geology, human history and so on can enhance a persons connection through knowledge.  But how you make them feel and care about a place is the ultimate goal.  People can see without words, how you as a Guide feel about a location.  This is why a career in guiding is such a rewarding job, because of the lasting impression you have on the people you take on tour.

RTO Code: 60142