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Oliver Wright

Oliver Wright

2021 Intern

With a passion for nature and a determination to promote sustainable wildlife trade, Oliver Wright regards his WWF internship position at TRAFFIC as a platform to drive positive change in the wildlife trade industry. Based in Johannesburg, he works as a Conservation Scientist intern researching the dynamics of both legal and illegal international trade of African marine species such as sharks and abalone.
Oliver has an Honours degree in Biodiversity and Conservation from Rhodes University and is currently doing his Master’s at Wits University, focusing on Conservation Biology.
We caught up with him, and he shared some insights into his career story and promising future:

What are you passionate about?
I am most passionate about two things – conserving nature for the benefit of future generations; and the greatest rugby team in the world, the Springboks.

What inspired your choice of study?
I was always fascinated by nature from a young age. I wanted to study something that I was interested in and that would hopefully allow me to explore beautiful places too.

What excites you about your internship?
I’m excited about the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s leaders in conservation and to find out what the future may hold for me when I complete this internship.

What are your expectations of this internship?
I expect to learn an enormous amount (which I already have), enjoy the experience and hopefully get a job at the end of the internship.

What contribution do you hope to make towards a future in which people and nature thrive?
I hope to contribute to people’s appreciation for the natural world and promote an understanding of our dependence on nature for health and happiness.

Through my work with TRAFFIC, I’d like to do my bit towards ensuring that the benefits of wildlife trade are shared equitably and sustainably among the people most dependent on nature for survival.

Who inspires you the most and why?
I’m more inspired by nature than any particular person. Awareness of the infinite complexities of the universe and life on Earth motivates me to understand and experience as much of the natural world as possible. If I were to name some human beings, they would be the former President Nelson Mandela, the late musician Johnny Clegg, the Springbok’s captain Siya Kolisi and the famous naturalist and wildlife documentary maker Sir David Attenborough.

I look up to all these people. They have inspired me through their achievements and what they have done for others.

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