“The internship taught me the importance of having strong working networks and building professional relationships.”
Imelda was born in the beautiful town of Ixopo in KwaZulu-Natal. Her parents, both passionate Geography teachers, instilled in Imelda a keen interest in the workings of natural systems. By the time she left school Imelda knew she wanted to pursue a career in earth sciences. In her leisure time Imelda is an outdoor fanatic and enjoys challenging herself with new experiences, such as bungee jumping. She currently works within the WWF-SA Freshwater programme as a data analyst.
Imelda moved to Cape Town to attend the University of the Western Cape, where she attained a BSc Applied Geology and a Postgraduate Diploma in Integrated Water Resources Management. An undergraduate course in Integrated Water Resource Management brought home to her the need for society to become better stewards of environmental resources and ignited her interest in water. She is currently completing her Masters degree in Environmental and Water Science. Her research explores the effects of land use practices on the sustainability of Verlorenvlei on the West Coast of South Africa.
Imelda’s internship in the Freshwater Programme at WWF-SA involved research and analysis around securing freshwater resources. During her internship she learned the importance of building professional relationships. She became more confident about meeting her deliverables and also learned to recognise and use the resources around her, such as professional networks, to advance her career and develop her skill set.
After her internship Imelda was asked to stay on in the Freshwater Programme as a data analyst. She is engaged in mapping, managing data and performing desktop freshwater research. Her focus is on the Strategic Water Source Areas of South Africa and identifying key stakeholders in the Larger Limpopo catchment for the Water Action Hub. She hopes to become instrumental in the protection and sustainable use of fresh water resources as an environmental scientist, working either in an environmental consultancy or an industry context.