The MacArthur Foundation has announced a grant of US $1.5 million to Bhutan to establish a new forestry school -- the Ugyen Wangchuck School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. The institution will train conservationists and managers for the country's forest reserves, which cover 35 per cent of the country. Forest guards and protected area staff will be taught the newest conservation techniques and protected area management approaches. Courses will also be available for professional staff to receive additional training to update their skills when necessary. The school will be designed to accommodate all staff needed to manage the country's protected areas. It will offer training on topics such as watershed management and environmental education. It will be located in Bumthang district in central Bhutan, with access to nearby forests and the Thrumshingla National Park for practical field training. Training programs will be developed in collaboration with the Yale School of Forestry, the US Forest Service, the Asian Institute of Technology, and the University of Montana's School of Forestry. Once established, the school's operating costs will be supported by the Royal Government of Bhutan.
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