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Frequently Asked Questions

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What will I get out of the Internship program?

This internship program is aimed at assisting in the development of students who are interested in running their own independent photography businesses that can survive financially and thrive in any economy. Through our strategic partnership with a shark cage diving operator, students also have a unique opportunity to take photos of the great white shark, one of the most charismatic marine animals in the world. 

Eligibility

Anyone can come on this course. It is ideally suited to:

  • Current or graduated students enrolled in academic institutes and studying towards a journalism, conservation, photo, design major
  • Aspirant photographers
  • Photographers who want to improve

What is the cost?

The equivalent of USD 2,650 per month is requested from all  applicants.In addition, applicants will be responsible to cover any additional bank charges or transfer commissions to third parties (e.g. paypal) associated with payments.

Daily work

As an attendee on this internship you will receive tuition in both basic and more advanced still photography and in software: lightroom and photoshop and other applications.  You will attend in the field trips with our staff.  We enjoy a good  relationship with various environmental organisations along the Garden Route and this offers a once in a life time opportunity to participate, not only in learning how to survive and make money in today’s markets but also how to prepare for a shoot and work professionally in the field/ on location. Daily work will be split between tutorials and practical work in the field. In total, a month will consist of:

  • a minimum of 10 expeditions to land based wildlife, conservation and eco tourism organisations, cultural sites, travel companies.
  • 1 x half day conducting an underwater photographic shoot (pool based)
  • 12 x half days training on current software and techniques.
  • At least 6 practical tutorials on different aspects of photography and the business of photography- especially looking at how you can start to make money out of your photos.

What business training will I receive? 

The concept of the program is that you learn not only to fine tune your skills in the field, but also what you need to start doing to become a successful independent new-age, travel or wildlife photographer.

For how long can I stay?

Attendees will be asked to stay for a minimum of one month and maximum of two months (shorter or longer stays will be considered if special motivation is given).

Where do I stay?

Your home for the duration of the course will be in the beautiful town of Mossel Bay. Mossel Bay is located 400 kilometres east of Cape Town, and 400 km west of Port Elizabeth. You will be staying at the Oceans Campus (www.oceans-campus.com), which can accommodate students (and families if required).

I am not a SCUBA diver but I see there is some Underwater work- can I still apply?

Yes, the wildlife and travel program is designed to accommodate media students who are passionate about environmental media, both above and below water and you need not be able to SCUBA dive as we do the UW shoots using free-diving/snorkelling equipment. Should you wish to learn how to dive then you can join a course with PADI instructors on campus.

Do I need to bring my own photographic equipment or gear?

In terms of photographic gear, students usually bring their own camera and tripod. There are lenses supplied by Africa Media for tutorial work only.  An additional charge is requested to cover the rental of any ‘top-end” gear students would like to rent/use. (see”cost of course”)

What equipment and facilities do Africa Media Photography students have access to and what should you bring?

  • Many students prefer to work with their own camera.  During set tutorials certain specialist lenses and filters are provided.
  • Various cameras and lenses can be hired for the duration of the internship.  It is preferable to pre-book these to avoid disappointment.
  • Computers: Please bring your own laptop if you have one. It must be pre-loaded with Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop as we use these editing softwares extensively on the course.

To where do I fly?

Mossel Bay: travel arrangements must be made from your home town to George Airport, South Africa. The cost of flights is to be borne by you.

 Arrival dates and pick-up arrangements?

Pickups and drop offs from George Airport will be organised for the 1st day of the month. If you arrive or leave outside of this time, you will be required to arrange transport between the Airport and our campus at your own cost.

NB: If you arrive on the internship prior to the 1st of the month, you will be required to pay additional accommodation and meals.

Cost for month 1 includes ( May, July and September ):

  • Transfer to and from the airport to the Oceans Campus on arrival and departure (only on the 1st of each month)
  • Every day transport from the Oceans Campus to the photographic platforms and client shoots
  • Dorm room accommodation (2-4 interns/room, gender separated). On request we can provide private or semi-private accommodation at an additional cost
  • Food (3 meals per day)
  • snorkeling equipment for all course expeditions only
  • All practical and theoretical training instruction
  • All the trips listed in the syllabus

Cost for month 2 includes ( June, August and October) :

  • Transfer to and from the airport to the Oceans Campus on arrival and departure (only on the 1st of each month)
  • Every day transport from the Oceans Campus to the photographic platforms and client shoots
  • Dorm room accommodation (2-4 interns/room, gender separated). On request we can provide private or semi-private accommodation at an additional cost
  • Food (3 meals per day)
  • snorkeling equipment for all course expeditions only
  • All practical and theoretical training instruction
  • All the trips listed in the syllabus

Not included in the cost for either month, as most are optional :

  • Additional days accommodation & food
  • Flights from your home country into and around RSA
  • Optional photographic / tourism expeditions (including travel, entry fees, etc.)
  • SCUBA diving training (i.e PADI Open water: R5100)(Other advanced courses are offered)
  • Soft SCUBA equipment (R200/day or R2000/internship)
  • Top end dSLR Cameras and lenses- various prices
  • Internet fees
  • Laundry service
  • Non-work excursions
  • Extra food and beverages
  • Bank charges or PayPal charges for transfer of fees
  • Special excursions over weekends with Africa Media or Oceans Discovery

We recommend you consider doing the following well priced and good value trips. These trips are optional and the costs listed here are the 2016 prices:

  • Seal diving in Plettenberg bay, incl travel and kit hire – R600
  • Shore entry dive in Plettenberg bay – R400
  • Meerkat Adventures in Oudtshoorn – R600
  • Sandboarding at Dragon Dune – R500
  • Black-water tubing and bungee jumping (prices vary)
  • White water rafting on the Breede River (prices vary acc to season)

There are plenty of other trips and things to do in weekends and for more info and photos on these please see our partners website: www.oceans-discovery.com 

Can I cancel or change the dates of the program I am accepted onto?

Due to the number of applications received and limited places, we unfortunately cannot accept all applicants to this internship. Therefore, we do not welcome cancellations or date changes after the final confirmation has been sent to us. Please, make sure that the dates you indicate in your application form suit your own schedule/budget before applying.

We request that a non-refundable deposit of $750 is paid within a month of being accepted into the program as confirmation (foreign and local bank fees are at the applicant’s cost). The remaining fee must be paid in full 1 month prior to arrival in South Africa. We would, however, appreciate it if you could let us know of any changes or cancellations as soon as you are aware of these, so that we are able to welcome another applicant.

More about the bank charges 

You can either do a bank transfer after we have sent you an invoice OR you can use PayPal. Both of these methods attract a small fee and the bank method is more hassle but slightly cheaper. Fees vary but you can count on about US$ 60 for the bank transfer and about $US95 for the Paypal method. Interns must cover these administration costs.  As the fees vary it is impossible for us to bill you when you pay for the program. After we have received the admin costs from PayPal or the bank we will advise you of the exact amount and ask that you bring it to your program. Your field specialist will arrange this with you and you will be asked to make the payment when in South Africa or Moz. Please ensure that you bring cash to make this payment as we don’t want admin costs to spiral into a never ending loop!

Do I need a VISA?

No. You will not be employed by Africa Media nor paid. As a photography student you are entitled to enter on a temporary visitors permit (e.g. tourism permit). Tourist visiting visas are usually issued for three months/90 days upon entry in South Africa. However, we do recommend that you contact the South African Embassy or Consulate in your country and confirm this fact.  If your application period is for a period longer than three months, or if you plan to travel in South Africa prior or after your internship for a period extending 90 days, you will have to apply for a Volunteer VISA application through your home embassy.

Who owns the media that I collect or make?

All media (photographs, video etc.) collected by you during the internship will belong to you. Africa Media will be entitled to use media collected for clients and also use media for company marketing. Interns will be required to sign contracts on arrival at the internship program.  If you would like to see a copy of the agreement before you come over, then let us know.

Do I need insurance?

Yes. When you are accepted into this program, you will have to sign liability, copyright documents, as well an agreement that you are knowingly partaking in potentially dangerous activities. You will not be covered for accidents or illnesses, so please do organize your own medical and health insurances. You may apply for a normal travel insurance policy. Chances that you will be injured by a marine predator are very slim if you follow the safety guidelines, and do not try anything foolish of which we would not approve. However, you will be working on a boat or game viewing vehicle in conditions which can, on occasions, be less than comfortable. Accidents may occur, so it is important to be covered in case of an emergency or accident. Be sure to have an insurance cover for your entire stay in Southern Africa. For SCUBA divers, you also need to be insured by the Divers Alert Network (DAN)

Do I need malaria medication?

No, we are far from malaria areas, and there are no strange African diseases which you could pick up (that is if you respect the same safety rules as anywhere else in the world).

What clothing do I need to bring?

For the field work with our environmental partners: some old jeans, tops and shoes/boots to use on the boat; warm clothing, a wind breaker jacket, good waterproof clothing; factor 30+ sun block and a wide brim hat; polarized sunglasses (allows you to see through the water better); diving certification. Bedding will be provided. You may bring toiletries, or buy them when you get here.

How much extra money should I bring or have available for extra’s and weekend excursions?

The info provided in the costs section should give you a good foundation from which to work this out. If you need to do a SCUBA course then R10 000 would take you up past advanced level, plus extra for off-course dives if you wish (approx. R400 per dive). It is probable that you may wish to do a weekend trip or two, and many activities are available on such trips including diving with sharks for example. We recommend you have around R4000 extra per weekend trip you wish to go on. Please note you do not have to go on any of these extra trips. This is simply for your information and you can join in should you wish to.

How can I get more information?

Once we have received your application forms for the internship, you will be asked (if you are not already) to be registered on Facebook (www.facebook.com). You will then be invited to join a student forum run by Africa Media. This forum will enable you to ask questions and seek out any additional information by meeting and networking with both staff here and other past students. You can also email us any time you like at info@africa-media.org