Paper & your career

The pulp and paper industry has many exciting opportunities for everyone – whether you’re natural born leader, an innovator, a numbers person or a people person, there are possibilities for you.

Most of the major industry players in South Africa are global companies with mills and plantations around the country and the world, making this a competitive and exciting sector. In South Africa, the pulp and paper industry play a major role in the economy and as such, the sector is always seeking to remain relevant by employing individuals who are passionate about the industry.

Diverse directions

There are a variety of different disciplines that one could pursue within the pulp and paper industry including: research laboratory, nursery, forestry management, environment, production, process and engineering, corporate affairs and management. To find your niche in this exciting sector, you may pursue your studies in biology, botany, chemistry, forestry, marketing, accountancy, mechatronics, wood science, engineering, zoology, microbiology – there are a host of options, all you have to do is choose!

University partnerships

PAMSA funds two lecturers at the Durban University of Technology and one at the University of KwaZulu-Natal to provide specialist technical education to the industry. A further six lecturers have been seconded to Johannesburg and KwaZulu-Natal to cover subject matter relating to pulp and paper for learnerships and the National Qualification Framework for outcome-based education specifically for the industry.

The training of operations personnel is critical, particularly in light of technological developments and the impact of HIV/AIDS on our workforce. PAMSA is coordinating the development of an industry-wide strategy to ensure that there is an adequately trained pipeline of talent.

At national level, degrees in forestry are offered by several universities while UNISA and the Durban University of Technology (DUT) offer a National Diploma in Pulp and Paper Technology.

If you interested in any of these, or any of the many other courses, please visit any of these websites:

National Certificate – Vocational (NCV) qualification

As part of our objective to enhance and expand the sector, PAMSA has partnered with a number of academic institutions. Through the Umfolozi and Ekurhuleni East Further Education and Training colleges, PAMSA offers a National Certificate – Vocational (NCV) qualification in process plant operations and pulp and papermaking technology from levels two to four.

The NCV 4 Process Operations certificate is the pulp and paper industry’s preferred qualification for people responsible for operations in the manufacture of paper products, newspapers, facial and toilet tissue, carton containers and many more. On graduation, learners may be eligible for employment in a number of different positions in the pulp and paper industry.

The primary function of the people completing this course is to control the sophisticated equipment, machinery and systems used in manufacturing processes. Similar to an academic matric, the NCV 4 puts learners in a position to apply at most universities to further their studies.


To qualify for this course, learners should be fully literate and have a formal qualification equivalent to Grade Nine or National Qualification Framework (NQF) level 1. Previous studies in mathematics and science would be a great help to students entering this field of study.

The pulp and paper industry, in conjunction with the Fibre Processing and Manufacturing Sector Education and Training Authority (FP&M SETA), has developed qualifications and learnerships in a range of fields.

Refer to the PAMSA Education and Careers Brochure for more information.


For registration information regarding the NCV qualification, please contact:
Umfolozi College – Mandeni and Esikhawini campuses
EPL du Toit
Tel: +27 (0) 32 456 3626
Email: info.umfan[@]

Ekurhuleni East College – KwaThema Campus
Dr Francois F Gouws
Tel: +27 (0) 11 730 6600
Email: francoisg[@]

Master of Science Development Programme

We have an exciting bursary scheme for post-graduate chemical engineering students. The Master of Science Development Programme facilitates bursary and scholarships for nine eligible applicants each year. Through it, successful candidates gain advanced skills during their post-graduate training in specialisations such as wood science, chemical analysis, material and energy balances and separation techniques. Email info[@] for more details.

When typing in the email address into your email address field please remove the [brackets].

Career opportunities

Careers at Nampak

Please visit their career section on their website: