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Student Opportunities


A list of training opportunities for early and mid-career professionals in fields relating to marine science. For internship and postdoctoral opportunities, please have a look at the Vacancies page.

​Bursaries and fellowships available to study Extreme Climatic Events in the Coastal Zone.

UWC, SAEON, SAWS, TUT1/18/2019
Several MSc and PhD bursaries area available for this collaborative project. The MSc and PhD projects have an ecology, and/or an ecological modelling theme. They thus relate to producing ecological data, and modelling hydrodynamics, water quality, populations, communities and ecosystems. All students will be engaged in fieldwork.
UKZN, UniZulu, ORI & CSIR1/18/2019
Our research programme at UKZN and the Oceanographic Research institute (ORI) in Durban focuses on ‘accelerated’ coral evolution to increase the rate and scope of adaptation. We invite applications for four PhD and two MSc projects to investigate aspects of resilience of corals to thermal stress. We are looking for motivated, self-driven students with a keen interest in contributing to understanding of global coral health.  Studentships have standard NRF bursaries attached. These are R90 000 per annum for an MSc and R120 000 per annum for a PhD.
UKZN & ORI1/21/2019
MSc and PhD projects at the University of Cape Town
We are looking for MSc and PhD students to join our project at the University of Cape Town investigating the ecology and biogeochemistry of marine microbial plankton, funded by the NRF under the Marine & Coastal Research Programme. The projects are linked to student bursaries: R90K per annum (x 2 years) for a (South African) MSc student and R120K per annum (x 3 years) for a suitable PhD student. Potential students should have backgrounds in microbiology, genetics and/or marine ecology. There also is scope for an ecological modelling project. Interested students should please send their CVs and copies of their academic transcripts to by 21 January 2019. 
Gain shipboard research experience on board the Research Vessel Polarstern during Sep-Oct 2019.  The MOSAiC School 2019 will be open to advanced graduate students and PhD students.
APECS / MOSAiC1/22/2019
​Regional Training Workshop on the Identification of Zooplankton and Fish Larvae of the Western Indian Ocean. Applications for the training are invited from researchers/scientists and students from the Western Indian Ocean region, dealing with the subject matter.
Date: 23rd February to 3rd March 2019
Location: Zanzibar, Tanzania
Apply ASAP. Selection process to start before deadline.
​MSc and PhD opportunity within project on "Small Procellariiformes as indicators of ecosystem changes and plastic pollution". This project intends to use small burrowing nesting seabirds breeding on the Prince Edward islands, the Tristan da Cunha archipelago and possibly Antarctica as indicators of the health and status of the Southern Ocean ecosystem.
SANAP / MAPRU / UCT1/25/2019
Two PhD studentships are available to investigate the environmental impacts, reproduction and life history patterns of a non-indigenous Diopatra species in the Knysna Estuary. The successful candidate will be supervised by Prof. Carol Simon, head of the Simon Polychaete Research Group based in the Department of Botany and Zoology at Stellenbosch University.
Stellenbosch University1/31/2019
MSc/PhD opportunity – a global study on microplastics in exchange with Germany. Are micro‐sized plastic particles a new stressor for marine benthic filter feeders? A comparative study on the effects of microplastics and natural seston components.
GAME, GEOMAR, DEA1/31/2019
An MSc opportunity is available for a student to assess and map habitat across several different shallow marine and estuarine habitats including sandy patches, algal beds, seagrass beds and reefs in Algoa Bay. The research will investigate shallow-water
seascape connectivity and is part of a larger programme assessing multi-habitat use/dependence for juvenile fishes within Algoa Bay. No closing date indicated. Project will start in ealy 2019.
The course provides world class education and training in the field of observational oceanography. This is an intensive training course for young professionals at the post-graduate level, ten months in duration, with an intake of ten trainees per year. Scholarships cover travel, room, board, tuition, and a modest allowance.
Location: Helgoland, Germany
Starts mid-September 2019
NF, AWI2/28/2019

​International Climate Protection Fellowship for young climate experts from developing countries

Spend a year working with a host of your choice in Germany on a research-based project you have developed yourself in the field of climate protection and climate-related resource conservation.

Humboldt Foundation3/1/2019

​PhD opportunity (sediment/ancient DNA) on South African and German joint project to identify changes in aquatic ecosystems over time to defines its natural variability in the past as reference condition and relates the condition of the present ecosystem to it.(No closing date indicated, posted 8 Jan 2019).


​MSc Bursary in Buoy Design for Antarctica. We at Electrical Engineering Department, University of Cape Town are working on the design of an innovative modular buoy which will be used in South African Antarctica missions. We are looking for a new MSc student to join the team as soon as possible. The work would require good embedded systems and mechatronics skills. We have NRF bursary (ZAR 90k per year) for South African citizens. Interested candidates are requested to get in touch with Prof. Amit Kumar Mishra ( as soon as possible. (No closing date indicated, posted on 8 Jan 2019)

This four year Ph.D post will be based in Groningen, the Netherlands and will entail frequent travel to South Africa. The aim of the project is to assimilate available information and define the global status of migratory fish and their swimways, and assess how climate change influences this. (No closing date. Posted on 9 Jan 2019.)
AER, UKZN, UMP, WFMF, University of Groningen, ZSL3/9/2019

​Enter the 6th biennial Best Young Researcher Paper Award to win your registration fee and $200 USD to attend The International Society for Ecological Modelling Global Conference. Any author, aged 35 or younger, who published a paper in Ecological Modelling in 2017–2019 or has a paper accepted before the deadline is eligible. 

The International Society for Ecological Modelling (ISEM)3/30/2019
Chick rearing internship
The Seabird Chick Rearing internship has been developed to equip you with chick husbandry skills and egg management skills for a career in captive breeding or seabird chick rearing. These 6 months are offered throught out the year. Visit for more information. No closing dates provided.