Meet our trainees​

Our development programmes offer talented young people the valuable opportunity to learn in a real work environment alongside their studies. See what our trainees had to say about their experiences.

Confidence Kgoeteg

Confidence Kgoetego, Engineer in Training (EIT)

The Sappi bursary I was awarded to complete my studies lightened my financial burden tremendously. This allowed me to focus on the most important aspects of school and learning.

I am currently completing the practical element of the Engineer in Training programme at Ngodwana Mill. It is a great working environment to explore the different electrical engineering systems that exist.

Sappi's generosity has inspired me to help others and give back to the community. I hope one day I will be able to help students achieve their goals just as Sappi has helped me. I am thankful and proud to be part of the Sappi family.

Lucja Wanicka

Lucja Wanicka, Bursary recipient

Sappi has granted me the opportunity to further my education, and to complete my master's degree in chemical engineering at the University of Pretoria. My experience so far has been eye-opening because I've learnt that it takes courage, motivation and support from family and friends to achieve what you set out to do.

With a positive attitude towards life, anything and everything is possible! Thank you Sappi for making my dream a reality.

Mhlengi Gumede

Mhlengi Gumede, Forester in Training (FIT)

The Forester in Training programme (FIT) has provided me with a solid foundation of knowledge and skills to help me through my career journey. It has assisted greatly in reducing the gap between university and work, by allowing me to slowly acquaint myself with the real world of employment.

The programme has exposed me to some of the challenges within the industry, such as fires, contractor management and communication, and given me experience of the practical side of the forestry industry which university cannot provide.

I have been able to gain invaluable experience, learn from my mistakes, and see my management skills progressively grow as I journey through the programme with Sappi. I believe that the Forester in Training programme is one of the best and most effective ways of developing well-equipped foresters that will fit well with the established team.

Varun Garg

Varun Garg, Bursary recipient

My experience at Sappi as a bursary student has been quite motivational, and I am proud to be part of this successful company. By paying for my education to become a chemical engineer, Sappi has given me the required push to work hard and try to excel in whatever I do.

Sappi has also given me the opportunity to grow as an engineer and translate my education into practical experience by offering me vacation work at their plants. This has shown me what to expect in real-life situations, and how to apply the theoretical knowledge I have acquired at university. I now have the confidence to face the various challenges that the working environment throws at us.

Wendy Zondi

Wendy Zondi, Forester in Training

The Forester in Training Programme (FIT) has helped me to understand difficulties at work and how to handle them professionally. I have learned that everything will not always go as planned, but you have to keep trying until you get it right. The programme has exposed me to different operations in the workplace, and has helped me to decide which path I wish to follow in my future career.

I can safely say that I would not be where I am now if it was not for Sappi and the bursary scheme that the organisation has in place. Having the peace of mind that your studies are paid for whilst at university, and that you are guaranteed a job after your studies are completed is every student's dream come true! This year has been a great year for me, and I believe Sappi can help me grow to be a more competent person in the work environment.

I have been able to gain invaluable experience, learn from my mistakes, and see my management skills progressively grow as I journey through the programme with Sappi.
Mhlengi Gumede, Forester in Training (FIT)
Got a question about applying to one of our development programmes? Check our frequently asked questions section to see if it's already been answered.