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Farewell to the class of 2023

The time has come around again to bid farewell to our most recent cohort of graduate interns who have cleared the first hurdle towards a green career.

As part of a leading global environmental network, WWF South Africa strives for a future in which people and nature thrive. To realise this vision, it invests in developing future leaders for the environment through its Graduate Intern Leadership Programme.  
The graduate internship programme dates back to 2011 when the first seven interns were placed with WWF. Since then, a total of 233 young leaders have passed through the programme working either within WWF or with a partner organisation.  
This year we say goodbye to 26 graduate interns who have just completed their year-long internships in occupations ranging from plant taxonomy to environmental law. They will be moving on after gaining invaluable work experience working alongside environmental professionals as their mentors. 
For the majority of graduate interns this was indeed the first step towards a successful career in the environmental sector. The 2023 cohort has seen two already placed in full-time employment and one being awarded a PhD scholarship. Another will be taking up a further internship at the University of Oslo in Norway. 
Among the many partner organisations to host the WWF interns over the years have been parastatal and provincial conservation agencies, university-based institutions, private companies and a number of NGOs.  
For a number of years, the programme has been supported through funding from the WWF Nedbank Green Trust (since 2013) and Barloworld. For the most recent intake, we also received funding from an individual in the WWF-Japan office.
We wish the rest of our interns well as they explore the job market, confident that they will soon transition into formal employment. Our trend analysis amongst previous cohorts shows that 86% of interns find work within three months of concluding the internship and a further 14% within 12 months.
The support of our funders, our host employers and mentors has added significant value to this programme and enabled us to achieve success in getting the interns to transition into the workplace. 
 

We say goodbye to 26 graduate interns who have just completed their year-long internships.

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