What was your motivation for attending and what did you gain for the academy?
Always wanted a career in the outdoors just never had the skills or confidence to go on my own and learn them. By learning with other people I feel I’ve learned more that I would with one-to-one tuition. Course content – brilliant, the amount of information you give us in such a small amount of time is good, intense but good! Qualifications, experience and personal skills and most of all confidence. Loved it, been tough but worth every minute. Thank you for giving me this opportunity and see you for the Powerboat!
Are you using your new skills in your current work? If so, how?
Yes, currently I work as a FlowRider instructor at www.flowhouse.co.uk working with all sorts of people from around the world! The skills I learnt through my time at OVAC acedamy has helped me get the job I am in as it made me a confident person in all kinds of environments with all kinds of people! Allthough I have been site trained as a wave opperator the instructor skills I learnt at OVAC has bennefited me massively as a FlowHouse instructor!
Since completing the 8 week intensive academy course, I have also completed my 3* Kayak with you!
As well as instructing, I have been working alot on the marketing side of the business - I will be taking the role as part time instructor and marketing assistant manager from the beginning of May, which I am very excited about! I think working with all sides of the Old Vicarage Adventure Centre Ltd company, during the Academy, helped me understand not just to have the qualities of a instructor but gain understanding on how to run a leisure company.
Alice Crossland - Outdoor Instructor Academy Student, 2011
I had a fantastic time on the course for all 8 weeks and finished with an excellent set of qualifications to get me started in the industry. Not only that, the course opened my eyes completely and taught me so much about the industry and the way it works, that I wouldn't have otherwise been able to find out. The centre staff were friendly and approachable people and I made some excellent friends along the way. Next up is the Raft Guide Course in Nepal and after that, who knows! But the academy was defiantly the best way into the industry to steer me on the right path.
Alistair Dorward - Outdoor Instructor Academy Student, 2012
Thanks to all the team at the Old Vicarage! A fantastic course with great people, everybody from catering staff to managers made me feel at home and part of the family.
The instruction was fantastic with almost one on one training! I started as a very amateur paddler and ended gaining my 3* white water kayak and level 1 coach which has been a great starting block getting into the industry. I also gained my BMC climbing wall award whilst gaining actual practical experience of running sessions with different age groups and group sizes, which has been invaluable experience and given me great confidence going into the work place.
Not only was the practical side of the course good but with seminars from experienced staff in all parts of the industry it gives you a great insight into what all aspects of the job entails.
I would advise anybody who wants a good start in the industry to look at this instructors course, out of all the courses I looked at this was the most appealing and I was not let down!
Thanks once again to all the staff. A special mention to the cooks! They do a marvellous job of keeping your energy up with good wholesome food. Definitely no chance of going hungry!
I made good friends and good contacts and left a happy customer!
Off I go to France to start my adventure!
David Bowden - Instructor Training Academy Student 2008
I am very impressed with the Centre's approach to running courses, the Swift-water Rescue course was very much hands-on. The instructors kept the classroom sessions to a minimum by holding discussions at the rescue sites, which definitely helped. The accommodation was top notch, they served way to much food (not complaining), while the Guides and Instructors made every effort to make me feel at home.
Good fun! I will definitely be doing something again with them in the future.
Peter Young (Kayaker) - Rescue 3 'Swift water Rescue Technician Course'