Past Interns

Philani Ngcobo

Supervised by Jasper Slingsby


Internship year: 2018/2019

I joined the South African Environmental Observation Network in March 2018 as a Data Technician Intern. I am a graduate of the University of KwaZulu-Natal (Environmental science), currently completing my Bachelor of Science Honours degree in Geographic Information at the University of Cape Town. My research interest is mapping fire distribution patterns within the Table Mountain using GIS and Remote sensing tools.

My area of interest onward is Big data management and analysis, as well as a detailed understanding of the Fynbos using GIS and remote sensing. I am an outdoor person, I like sailing, hiking and I always try to push my limits inspired by the words of Nelson Mandela “it always seems impossible until its done”.

Qondisa Mbekwa

Supervised by Abri de Buys


Internship year: 2017/2018

I became part of the SAEON team in April 2017 as a DTS/NRF Environmental intern. I am an environmental and water sciences graduate from the University of the Western Cape. In my honours level I focused on surface water hydrology, looking at the trend of water quality in Kuilsriver. I am highly fascinated by environmental management and surface water hydrology. My work at the SAEON includes monitoring and collection of meteorological and stream flow data, maintaining the equipment as well as calibration. I am a reserved person, I love nature and I’m always eager to learn.

Nicole Kristin Arendse

Supervised by Jasper Slingsby


Internship year: 2017/2018

I joined the South African Environmental Observation Network in March 2017 as a DTS/NRF intern. I am a Medical Biochemistry graduate student from the University of Cape Town with a strong background in plant-related molecular science. I completed my Honours research project at the UCT Medical School, researching the substrate specificity determination of the Arabidopsis thaliana Nitrilase 1 enzyme family. My research was centered on 3D protein structure evolution in the context of enzyme substrate specificity, plant defense and co-adaptation.

My current interests at SAEON include climate change related ecological studies in conjunction with stream-flow data management and analysis. I have a diffident personality, enjoy long walks with good company and am a firm believer in destiny!

Sibongiseni Nyendwana

Internship year: 2016/2017 


Mpho Netshiongolwe

Internship period: Jan - Feb 2017 

Sedzani Mahuluhulu

Internship year: 2016/2017 

Luvuyo Dlamini


Internship year: 2014/2015 

Michelle Malan 


Internship year: 2013/2014

Nick Zaloumis 


Internship year: 2013/2014

Siyasanga Mpehle 

Internship year: 2012/2013

Emma Gray 


Internship year: 2012/2013

Fhatani Ranwashe 


Internship year: 2012/2013

George Sekonya 


Internship year: 2010/2011