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Eligibility & FAQs



Indian nationals and other nationalities growing up in India (Indian residents).



  • Working knowledge of English is mandatory

  • Graduates – M.Sc in life sciences (Botany, Zoology, Animal science, Plant science, Veterinary, Forestry, Agriculture, Life Science)

  • Undergraduates (e.g., B.Sc, B.Com, B.E.) or graduates (e.g., M.Sc, M.Phil) from any field with work experience in wildlife/ conservation for a minimum of 2 years

  • Anyone concerned about well-being and conservation of wild species and ecosystems, but lacking knowledge and skills about the same are equally welcome*.

  • Post graduates (Ph.D) in life sciences.

  • Post graduates (Ph.D) in any field with a minimum of two years experience in wildlife/ conservation.


Other optional but relevant criteria:

  • Work experience in wildlife conservation.

  • Volunteering/ Internship in wildlife conservation.

  • Two-wheeler or Four-wheeler driving license.

Course-related FAQs

What does RHATC stand for?

A young wildlife enthusiast Ram Hattikudur who had a fascination for wildlife with a particular interest in spiders was training to become a career conservationist. Unfortunately, his life was cut short and this course/fellowship is started by his family to honour his enthusiasm for wildlife conservation. To know more about him, click here

What are the main objectives and duration of this course?

All life science, undergraduates & graduates enthusiasts genuinely interested in wildlife studies and conservation may not get the right break early in their lives to make a career in this field. More often than not, the theoretical knowledge they are exposed to falls short as the challenges in the field are radically different. Practical application demands a more rigorous, versatile and holistic approach to successfully solve conservation issues.


The Ram Hattikudur Advanced Training in Conservation bridges the gap for graduates and young professionals between academic learning and on-the-ground conservation by providing real-time training in different aspects of conservation biology gleaned from over 30 years of experience in the field.


The three months inhouse training is based on the unique conservation engineering model developed by Sanjay Molur and the late Sally Walker. Interspersed with conversations with experts from around the world, debates and developing action plans on real-time issues, understanding case studies from around the country and the challenges faced by stakeholders, exploring tools for community conservation, fun activities and local field trips. The course ends with a month long onsite internship with one of our partner organizations and mentored by the lead investigator at the site.

What are the various aspects taught in the course and who will be the mentors?

Taxonomy, Research Techniques, Conservation policies, IUCN Red Listing, Integrating Science and Social aspects, Collecting Conservation Evidence, Human-wildlife Interactions, Species and Ecosystem Conservation, Business and Biodiversity, Governance – Laws and Policies are a few aspects taught along with training in soft skills such as Writing Grants, Publications, Conservation Communications, Manuscripts, Presentations, Verbal Communication Skills, Facilitation, etc.


We are proud to have a panel of mentors (who are veterans in the field and recognized worldwide for their invaluable contributions) agree to tutor and be a part of this programme in a big way. We vouch their expertise and guidance will motivate our candidates to another level of proficiency and commitment.

Is this a University affiliated course?



Who gives the certificate?

Zoo Outreach Organisation.

Will this certificate help me get a job?

This certificate will give you a leg up in building a career in wildlife conservation.


Does the course have any community reservations?

There are no reservations. The course is purely based on merit and provides equal opportunity.

Is it a residential program?

Candidates will need to be present in-house (Coimbatore) through the entire stretch of four months failing which his/her training will be deemed incomplete and Certificate of completion will be withheld.

Is it mandatory for all candidates to have the booster shot of COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes, it is mandatory for all candidates to have the booster shot of COVID-19 vaccine (all 3 doses) before the commencement of the course.


Is there an age restriction?

The fellow needs to be above 21 years (as on 1 October 2023) to apply for the course. There is no upper age limit for a fellow to participate though.

Who is the course director/ mentor?

Dr. Sanjay Molur, Executive Director, Zoo Outreach Organisation

What is the cost of the course and how much do I have to pay?

The course enrolls 10+2 fellows and will be called ‘Ram Hattikudur Fellows’. There are 3 types of fellowships: Fully-funded Fellows, Mostly-funded Fellows, and Self-funded Fellows.


Candidates can compete for 3 full scholarships, which are available for deserving candidates based on need & circumstance and as decided by the jury.  


The Mostly-funded fellowship will take care of the majority of the course costs, which includes accommodation, food, tuition, course materials, and course related travel for 7 Fellows. The cost for successful candidates with mostly-funded fellowship is Rs 30,000.


In addition to ten fellows, we are opening two seats for self-funded applicants from India and abroad. If you are interested to know further, please get in touch with us at or call us at 9385339863, 7605035455 before 31 July 2023.

What other costs do I have to bear?

Successful candidates of the RHATC course will have to bear their own travel costs to and from Coimbatore at the times of joining and leaving.


All personal costs that are not covered by the fellowship will have to be borne by the candidates, e.g., personal dietary and beverage requirements, travel for shopping or sightseeing. Other than these, there are no additional costs.

Can foreign nationals apply for this course?

Yes, RHATC 2023-24 is open for foreign nationals. In addition to ten fellows, we are opening two seats for self-funded applicants from India and abroad. If you are interested please get in touch with us at before 31 July 2023. We are excited to welcome all you conservation enthusiasts to understand the principles of conservation biology and Indian ecosystems.


What happens if I am unable to qualify for the top ten seats?

Overwhelmed with responses for the past two years, we are happy to announce that we are opening up two more self-funded seats for Indian and foreign nationals. If you are interested to know further, please get in touch with us at or call us at 9385339863, 7605035455 before 31 July 2023. 

Application-related FAQs

Who is eligible for this course?/Who can apply?

Graduates & Undergraduates from any field with field/work experience in conservation (including volunteers/interns with a certificate/letter from the organization) for a minimum of 2 years,

and fresh Graduates in life sciences.

If I don’t fit into the above criteria, can I still apply?

Anyone who is genuinely concerned and wanting to work aggressively for the well-being of wild species and ecosystems can submit the application and attach an additional letter of justification.

How to apply?

Read the eligibility criteria and the Application-related FAQs. If you qualify and have understood the application requirements

What are the documents required to apply?

  • Passport-size photo.

  • Certificates (Final Degree / Diplomas).

  • Vaccination Certificate.

  • Why do you want to take up this course? (150 words).

  • References from two referees on their letterhead.

  • Identity Proof (Aadhaar / Driving License or Passport).

  • 600-word Statement of Purpose  – What motivates you to take up a career in wildlife conservation?

  • Publications (Peer-reviewed or popular) if any.

  • Letter of Support from the organization head If your application and attendance to RHATC is supported by your current organization.

  • Curriculum Vitae.

What is a Reference?

A reference is a letter from a person (referee) knowledgeable of your expertise/ qualifications/ experience/ personality who can provide a formal letter of recommendation for the fellowship.  The person should also vouch for your behaviour and provide a character statement.

What should the reference statement include?

A referee should provide an account of the applicant's professional skill sets, passion for wildlife conservation, character, and achievements. A reference statement should also provide information on the applicant's career in conservation, if applicable.

What is a statement of purpose?

It is a 600-words statement indicating your motivation for conservation based on your personal experiences/case studies with a convincing justification to indicate your candidacy for this course.

How and where do I submit the documents?

The documents need to be uploaded along with the online application form.  Each document should not exceed 2mb file size.


I am not able to submit the form. What do I do?

Please check if you have filled in answers to all the mandatory questions. If you are still unable to submit the form, contact – or call the Course Coordinator +91 9385339863, 7605035455.


How long is the course?

The course is 4 months long with 3 months of theory and 1 month of internship.


What is the selection process like?

  1. Applications will be internally assessed.

  2. Shortlisted applicants will be called for a virtual interview conducted by a selection jury.

  3. Selected applicants will undergo a final interview.

  4. The final selected fellows will be intimated by email.


Will the fellows be given a certificate at the end of the course?

Yes, this is a certificate course and on successfully completing four months of rigorous training and field activities fellows will be provided with a certificate of completion of RHATC.

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