Issue 6 - 2 July 2012 enews home

Big picture view of land management opportunities on Tiwi

By Patrick Nelson

Adam Bourke

Geologist Phillip Hutt with students at Matilda Zircon's Lethbridge Bay site

A group of Tiwi Island secondary students has received a "big picture" introduction to land management and how it relates to industry on the island.

Lecturers Michael Hicks and Adrian Hendry from CDU's School of Indigenous Knowledges and Public Policy have accompanied students from Tiwi College on several field trips as part of the Certificate I in Conservation and Land Management course.

Mr Hicks said students had been shown day-to-day operations and workplace safety management at the Matilda Zircon sand mine and the Yapilika Forestry Plantation, and had visited weed infestation sites with the Tiwi Land Rangers.

"Rather than teach a course from a book, or build a certificate around a small one-off project, we opted to show students a 'big picture' view of land management and how it relates to industry," Mr Hicks said.

"These certificate I courses are important in building people's interest in lifelong learning and provide pathways to further education.

"We anticipate that many of these students will advance through the vocational education and training system into higher education courses in environmental science and become future leaders who manage country for the wellbeing of their people."

Mr Hicks said the course would continue during terms three and four, covering small machinery maintenance and operation, chemical safety, and formal plant identification and classification.

He said students would be encouraged to undertake "work experience" industry placements on the island and demonstrate their new skills to potential employers.