Two senior academic staff promoted to Associate Professor at NMMU George
The rank of Associate Professor at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s George Campus has received a well-deserved boost.
Dr Joshua Louw, Director of the School of Natural Resource Management at Saasveld, and Dr Laurence Watson, Principal Lecturer in the Nature Conservation and Game Ranch Management Programme recently received the news that they have both been promoted to Associate Professor.
The Promotions Committee which had evaluated the applications had indicated that they were very impressed with the standard of the George Campus candidates – proof that George Campus can hold its own in any group! Research, research output, publications and the overseeing of Masters and Doctoral candidates were some of the criteria taken into account.
Josua Louw started his career in the forest industry with the former Forestek Division of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research. He was involved in forest site classification and evaluation research and development work in all the major forest growing areas of South Africa, as well as various other countries in southern and eastern Africa. In 1997 he was appointed as Head of Department for Forestry at the then PE Technikon (Saasveld Campus). Since 2007 he fulfils the role of Director of the School of Natural Resource Management at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, George Campus. As such, he is responsible for curriculum development for all programmes of the School, including Forestry, as well as the strategic development and orientation of these programmes to ensure continued market relevance and academic credibility.
His academic qualifications include BSc, BSc (Hons), an MSc in Forestry from the University of Stellenbosch, and a PhD from the University of Witwatersrand. Main research interests include ecological land classification and landscape ecology, together with the various applications of this in the commercial forestry sector. He has published both locally and internationally on this topic.
Prof. Laurence Watson’s research is specifically aimed at providing guidelines for the management of large mammals on nature reserves and game ranches, and also at reducing the conflict between humans and large predators in areas outside nature reserves. He emphasises that “This type of research is important for sustainable management of natural resources and the conservation of biodiversity”.
Prof Watson started lecturing at the then Port Elizabeth Technikon in 1990 and presently lectures in the Nature Conservation and Game Ranch Management programmes at the George Campus of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. He lectures the following subjects: Animal Studies I, II and III at the Diploma level and the year subject Plant Studies IV at the BTech level. He has previously and is currently overseeing the studies of masters and doctoral students who are doing research in his research field, covering aspects from cheetah conservation to buffalo management.
His academic qualifications include a BSc (Hons) from Rhodes University, an MSc (University of Natal) and PhD from Wits University.
Both agree that their students and colleagues constantly inspire and motivate them to achieve and maintain high levels of excellence.