Wits Health: Research Internship Opportunity 2020

Wits Health

The South Africa-Pitt Public Health Genomic Epidemiology Training Program (SAPPHGenE) aims to provide South African investigators with multidisciplinary tools needed to conduct cutting-edge research in public health genomics. Due to the current severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic, allowance has been made to include a focus on the epidemiology, genomic epidemiology and evolution of this virus.

The program will provide a combination of non-degree and post-graduate degree training by a multidisciplinary group of experienced mentors at University of Pittsburgh, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and NICD. Trainees will have access to research training opportunities and resources available at the training sites.

We would like to invite applications from South African citizens in possession of a BSc Hons degree and an interest in viral evolution and bioinformatics to join us to complete an MSc (full time), registered at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg with primary supervisors/mentors located at the NICD (CRDM). Co-mentors will be located in the US, and it is expected that recipients will travel to the US for part of their training.


  • BSc Hons degree
  • Interest in viral evolution and bioinformatics

Program benefits

This highly competitive program includes funds for:

  • Non-taxable payment (not applicable if already getting a salary: ~R170,000.00 for MSc students)
  • Tuition fees and university registration
  • Books and other educational expenses
  • Laptop computer with relevant software

For international training opportunities:

  • All travel expenses (e.g., airfare, visa, incidentals)
  • Non-taxable payment for living expenses and insurance
  • Administrative support for visas

How to Apply

Applications must include:

  • Details of exceptional academic performance
  • Candidate’s motivation letter
  • Strong letters of recommendation and support (e.g., from previous tutors, supervisors or managers)
  • Stated commitment to pursue SAPPHGenE research
  • Highlight likely contributions to research in South Africa


Applications should be sent to Shahana Wadie ([email protected]) for opportunities starting as soon as possible in 2020. Deadline for applications is 15 June 2020.