The Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa (PAMSA) has opened applications for its Masters of Engineering (M.Eng.) bursary programme which offers eligible Bachelor of Science engineering students the opportunity to pursue a career in the forest products industry.
Awarded annually, each bursary is valued at R130,000 per year for two years of full-time study towards a M.Eng. degree at participating universities. Applications must be done
PAMSA, which represents the majority of South African pulp and paper producers, has been running the bursary programme for 10 years. Some 65 students have completed the programme with three progressing to PhD while more than 90% of the graduates have found careers as chemical and process engineers with PAMSA’s member companies.
The sector’s research aims to maximise the use of commercially grown timber by using – and re-using as much of the tree as possible, such as lignin and sugars. There is also a lot of work using process waste and by-products to develop biomaterials and nanocellulose structures for industrial application.
“Wood for commercial and industrial use comes from sustainably managed plantations in South Africa,” says Jane Molony, PAMSA executive director. “The science and chemistry behind wood, pulp and paper products presents our industry and country with some unique opportunities for the circular economy, mitigating climate change and making use of an available and renewable resource – farmed trees.
“By working with the Universities of North West, Pretoria, Stellenbosch and Witwatersrand, PAMSA is able to open bright young minds to the opportunities within a truly sustainable industry.
PAMSA requires that the students have a good academic record with a minimum 60% average in the final year of study. Applicants must also have completed their BSc studies in five years or less.