05/31/2017 - 00:00

On December 6, the Council on Higher Education formally awarded accreditation to the Institute's one-year, postgraduate diploma programme, "Technical Conservation Studies". The auspicious news was unexpectedly relayed to our offices on the closing day of the previous academic year - thereby delivering a delightful end to what had been a busy and rewarding year on campus! At the same time, this news marks the favourable culmination of 22 years of institutional operations, curriculum development and campus establishment. Thank you for sharing our joy at this gratifying outcome, and at all made possible thereby...!

The Council's December announcement had come too late for purposes of the 2017 academic year, and it should therefore be noted that the launch of the inaugural presentation has accordingly been moved forward to 17 January 2018. We nonetheless expect a very busy and productive interim year and - inevitably - one does come to appreciate the added opportunity to prepare for the launch of this groundbreaking programme. 

In a setting as unprecedentedly rural as the Institute's, the emergence of a higher learning institution is a notable development. One recognizes that this development is poised to introduce a very exciting, amenable and complimentary dynamic to the village of Twee Riviere and, potentially, to the region. On a grander scale, one hopes that this breakthrough may also be a precursor to the wider emergence of specialist, private higher education (graduate and postgraduate) institutions in other rural towns, across South Africa. (With time, such sapling universities could well pose an attractive and desirable alternative to increasingly crowded or highly urbanized campuses.)

If you have not personally had opportunity to visit this tiny Langkloof community, you can steal a bird's eye view via this Google Maps link to Twee Riviere.

The postgraduate diploma programme's trimester overview is attached, along with the applicable entry prerequisites for prospective students. This NQF level 8 programme's course material has been generously supplemented by nine, prescribed conservation text books. The prescribed titles were selected from nearly 300 conservation volumes in the Institute's library, having being picked for the highly practical application they offer, and/or the particular relevance of their conservation theory. You'll be delighted to know that the Programme Office and faculty have also elected to make these same titles available via the Institute's Bibliotheca Universitas textbook desk, to benefit South Africa's existing restoration and conservation cohort. In the attached catalogue, you will find full title descriptions as well as handy preview pages to assist your selection. Feel free to avail yourself of this opportunity to acquire top drawer conservation textbooks at a very favourable cost. Also, please do not hesitate to speak to the faculty member relevant to your specialism, to help ensure that you acquire precisely the right book to assist your continued professional learning.

Lastly, committed practitioners will be interested to know that registrations for the distance study, 4-month on-line course "Bridging to Chemistry for Conservation", have now opened for the 2017 academic year. Please find the course prospectus attached, including links permitting on-line application and further enquiries. A limited number of part-bursaries for 2017 are also in hand, and any correspondence or applications in regard course fees may be directed to the Chairman's office via chairman@sainst.org

We sincerely wish every conservation practitioner well on their studio endeavours this year. One recognizes that conservation or restoration practice can readily lapse into a solitary occupation or routine, particularly for the sole proprietor: Be encouraged therefore to promote and nourish the liveliness of your vocational interest - and not to ebb into a rut of dull convenience! After all, experience teaches that aptitude, pleasure and reward dwindle as convenience and ease increase. Be encouraged to challenge yourself...

Adriaan Botha
(Chairman of the Board)

The South African Institute for Heritage Science and Conservation

Mon, 01/23/2017 - 13:51

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