Graduate joins SADSTIA
University of Cape Town graduate Fisokuhle Mbatha has joined the South African Deep-Sea Trawling Industry Association (SADSTIA) for a year-long internship, working closely with secretary Johann Augustyn to gain as much knowledge of industry and its management as she can.
Fisokuhle Mbatha took up her position with SADSTIA following a rigorous interview and assessment process that was facilitated by WWF-South Africa. She is one of several young professionals to be placed in appropriate organisations by WWFâ€™s Graduate Internship Programme.
The Programme enables young professionals with qualifications in the fields of natural science, law, engineering, business or social science to gain valuable experience, build meaningful networks and contribute to the long-term improvement of the environment.
â€˜SADSTIA was my first choice,â€™ said Fisokuhle who was interviewed by four organisations before being offered an internship with SADSTIA. Her goal is to pursue a career in fisheries management and she is very excited to be working for SADSTIA and in an environment where she comes into contact with the issues and personalities that characterise South Africaâ€™s diverse and colourful commercial fishing industry every day.
Remarkably, prior to her starting a marine biology degree at the University of Cape Town (UCT), Fisokuhle had no experience of the sea whatsoever. A field trip in her first year of university, when she learnt about the plants and animals that inhabit the rocky shores around Cape Town, convinced her that she wanted to learn more about the marine environment. She graduated with a BSc in Marine Biology, Ocean and Atmospheric Science and then read for an Honours degree in Ocean and Atmospheric Science.
Recently Fisokuhle submitted a thesis to UCT W22; the final step in her endeavours to attain a Masters Degree in Applied Marine Science, also from UCT.
Like many South Africans of her generation, Fisokuhle is determined to help other young people to achieve their dreams and gain an education. She mentors a learner who is participating in the national Science Expo and gives motivational talks to young people with epilepsy.
â€˜I make sure every day is a productive day,â€™ Fisokuhle said with a gentle smile. â€˜What inspires me is knowing that Iâ€™ve had an impact, that Iâ€™ve changed lives.â€™
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