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Students invited to contribute to green innovation

Successful applicants will get a bursary of R320 000 to cover two years of full-time study for a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering (MEng or MScEng) research.

The Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa (PAMSA) invites BSc and BEng final-year students and graduates to join its Master’s in Engineering bursary and research programme.

Successful applicants will get a bursary of R320 000 to cover two years of full-time study for a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering (MEng or MScEng) research degree at one of four participating universities. The bursary will cover the costs of tuition, accommodation, study materials and a monthly stipend.

“The industry is actively looking for the brightest and best young chemical engineering talents equipped with the right skills for the circular economy,” said PAMSA communications manager Samantha Choles.

She added the Master’s research projects focused on process research, including but not limited to resource efficiency, data science, the beneficiation of process waste into products of value, and the development of biofuels.

Established 14 years ago, the programme is regarded as a meaningful investment by the pulp and paper industry and has been the platform for the development of chemical engineers who have contributed towards the industry’s sustainability goals.

“Several of the programme’s alumni still work for PAMSA’s member companies,” noted Choles.

The four participating universities include North-West University (NWU), the University of Pretoria (UP), Stellenbosch University (SU) and the University of Witwatersrand (Wits).

Many of the students who participated in the programme acknowledged it has opened new doors while furthering their academic ambitions and offering exposure to a diverse industry.

“Participating industry companies will consider successful graduates from the programme for employment as engineers-in-training and gain practical experience,” added Choles.

UP Master’s student Lerato Tau is engaged in a project that uses thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) to determine the make-up of materials used in the paper-making process – from feedstock right through to the final product.

TGA is a technique that measures the thermal stability of materials, including polymers. Passionate about research and development, she is thrilled at the opportunity to explore new concepts.

“For me, this programme represents an incredible opportunity to learn, grow and make meaningful contributions to the paper manufacturing industry.

“PAMSA’s assistance extends beyond the bursary and also offers a support system for kick-starting a career in the industry,” said Tau.

The application process is now open on PAMSA’s website thepaperstory.co.za. The application deadline is June 28. Terms, conditions and criteria apply.

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