National Research Foundation DST-NRF Internship Programme for Unemployed South African Graduates

National Research Foundation DST-NRF Internship Programme for Unemployed South African Graduates

The National Research Foundation (NRF) is responsible for the management of the DST-NRF Internship Programme in which unemployed Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) graduates and postgraduates (including those in Social Sciences and Humanities) are offered an opportunity to acquire practical work experience through mentoring and an exposure to a research environment.

This opportunity is also offered to those unemployed graduates and postgraduates who are interested in research management; research support and administration through placement at research offices in public higher education institutions and research agencies.

Candidates with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply. Applications are invited from candidates who are interested in acquiring work experience in specific areas of specialization or disciplines.

Eligibility Criteria

  • To be eligible to apply, candidates must be:
  • South African citizens or permanent residents who hold a South African identity.
  • Non-South Africans are not eligible to apply.
  • Unemployed graduates who hold an Advanced Diploma or Bachelor’s degree at NQF level 7, Honours or BTech degrees at NQF level 8 and MTech or Master’s degrees at NQF level 9 qualify to apply for this internship.
  • Applicants who are in their final year of study may apply provided that studies will be completed by 28 February 2019 and would therefore be able to provide proof of qualification before commencement of internship on 1 April 2019.
  • In the fields of Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET), Research and Development, Social Sciences and Humanities.
  • 35 years old or younger at the time of submitting an application.

    The following candidates are NOT eligible to apply:

  • Candidates holding a National Diploma at NQF level 6 as well as DTech and PhD at NQF level 10
  • Candidates who would be registered full-time, as well as first year registered Masters (part-time or full time) students during the 2019 academic year
  • Candidates who have been beneficiaries of the DST-NRF Internship Program in the past
  • The internship program is offered for a period of 12 months.
  • Successful applicants will be required to sign a contract for the duration of the internship.


  • Interns will receive a monthly salary ranging between R6 070.00 and R8 050.00 per month – depending on the level of qualification.

    Placement at Various Host Institutions

  • Participating Host Institutions are located throughout the country and so interested
    applicants should ensure that they apply for a position available in the province where they would like to be placed.
  • Kindly note that the NRF does not pay relocation costs to any appointed candidates who choose to relocate to another province.

    Short Listing and Interviews

  • Short listing and interview of applicants will be conducted by mentors at the participating Host Institutions.
  • Applicants will be shortlisted and contacted using the personal email provided in the application to schedule interviews.
  • Applicants are advised to check their emails regularly during the period 18 December 2018 to 31 March 2019.

    How to Apply

  • All applications must be submitted electronically on the NRF Online Submission System at
  • Applicants must first register under the tab new registration and provide their personal details as required.
  • After registration, log in with your ID number and password, go to my applications and create an application and then Internship Program Applicants 2018 and apply there following instructions.
  • The closing date for applications is 02 November 2018, no late applications will be considered.


  • Certified copies of certificates;
  • Certified academic records; and
  • Certified copy of the South African ID
  • For technical online enquiries, please contact the Support Desk (Mondays to Fridays from 08h00 to 16h30) on: Tel: (012) 481 4202 or E-mail:
  • For programme related queries contact:
    Sello Raseruthe
  • Tel: (012) 481 4388
  • E-mail:
  • Monwabisi Mfihlo:
  • Tel: (012) 481 4023
  • E-mail:

    How to Apply

  • For more information and scholarships ,fellowships or Internships application details, see; National Research Foundation DST-NRF Internship Programme for Unemployed South African Graduates - Apply by 2nd November 2018

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