The Academy for Environmental Leadership SA (AEL) is an academic institution focusing on students on a post matric level, where students enroll for a one year course in Environmental and Conservation studies. The Academy is an accredited institution and students receive a National Level NQF5 Certificate upon successful completion of the course. Such a qualification will make it possible to pursue further studies in the fields of environmental studies and conservation, or any other course they may decide on. They would also be equipped to pursue a career in one of the many related fields, or any other opportunity which may arise.
The Academy is proud to announce that Professor Leopoldt van Huyssteen, currently the Chief Operating Officer at Stellenbosch University, has been appointed as their Head of Academics with immediate effect.
Professor Van Huyssteen will remain in his current capacity at the University of Stellenbosch until the end of 2017. “Professor Van Huyssteen has had a remarkable academic career and we are privileged to use his experience and knowledge for the benefit of our Academy” says Fef le Roux, Chairperson and Director of AEL.
Professor van Huyssteen grew up in the Eastern Cape and completed his PhD (Agric) studies at the University of Stellenbosch, majoring in Soil Science and Chemistry. During his career at the Department of Agricultural Development he held various positions as scientist and Director.
Since January 1999, he has been employed by Stellenbosch University, where he has held several senior positions as professor, Dean, Executive Director and Acting Rector. From September 2013 he has been appointed as Chief Operating Officer at the University, a position he holds to this day. He is the author and co-author of many scientific publications and books. He also attended many international conferences, several as an invited speaker.
“His vast academic and practical knowledge is an invaluable asset to the further development and growth of AEL”, says Gys Botha, CEO and Director of AEL.
Prof Van Huyssteen takes this position previously held by the renowned Dave Pepler, who has decided to be available as lecturer of the Curriculum to AEL students. The Academy is grateful for the huge role played by Pepler during 2016, their inaugural year.
AEL is situated in the Northern Cape on the banks of the Orange River near Upington. The AEL campus boasts sports fields, a gym, swimming pool, library and laboratory. Students are exposed to a vast array of outdoor and practical activities, such as canoeing, 4×4 driving skills, trips to Namibia and Kgalagadi, field craft and first aid.