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Attention Galapagos Guides: Apply Today for our Free 'Five Star Guiding in Five Days' Course

Date: September 11, 2013

We are pleased to announce that we are offering a free guide training course at the Charles Darwin Research Station on the island of Santa Cruz from November 18-22, 2013.

The course, Five Days to Five Star Guiding, is being offered in conjunction with Charles Darwin Foundation and was designed by top international guide training experts Sam Ham, PhD and Thomas O’Brien specifically for Galapagos guides. The curriculum will cover a range of topics including thematic interpretation, ethics and professionalism, and the guide’s role as an ambassador for conservation. Ham and O’Brien will lead the five-day program to help guides achieve excellence in their field.

“Great guiding is important in every destination. But because the Galapagos is such a unique and complex place, the quality of guiding is perhaps even more important there in terms of overall guest experience,” says Kurt Kutay, president and founder of IGTOA member company Wildland Adventures and IGTOA president. “By providing Galapagos guides with world-class training, IGTOA aims to help ensure that the islands remain the world’s preeminent nature travel destination.”

“My own research has revealed the pivotal role that guides play, both in the overall quality of travelers' experiences and in the perceptions, understanding and appreciation of truly special places like Galapagos,” says Dr. Ham, Director of the Center for International Training and Outreach at the University of Idaho's College of Natural Resources and author of leading books and academic papers on guiding. “It is through these perceptions and understanding that growing a worldwide constituency for nature and conservation is even possible.
Professionalism in guiding simply must be a centerpiece of any tour operator's mission, at least if sustainability and making a positive difference in the world matters.”

The course, valued at US $2,495 retail, will be offered free of charge for up to 25 licensed national park guides, and will include room, board and all course materials. Guides who successfully complete the course will receive a Certificate of Completion from IGTOA and be included on a list of IGTOA certified guides distributed to member companies.

Tour operators and licensed Galapagos National Park guides who are interested in learning more about the program should visit the Five Days to Five Star Guiding application page.

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Matt Kareus

Matt is the Executive Director of IGTOA.


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