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By Staff Reporter : PNG Today

Monica, defying the odds

It’s not easy working in a predominantly male field, but for 36-year-old Monica Koek who is Ok Tedi Mining’s Senior Geotechnical Engineer, the sky is the limit.
Monica recently received news that she has met the requirements to graduate from the postgraduate program, Master of Engineering Science – Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology, at the University of New South Wales, in Sydney, Australia.
Monica from Mendi, Southern Highlands started her employment with OTML in 2009 and has not looked back, always aiming to go one step higher, to know more about her job and become a professional in her chosen field.
Three years ago she embarked on part-time postgraduate study that often led her to staying up late after long hours at work. As Monica puts it, ‘the challenges were great and the sacrifices greater”, as she did her best to balance a full-time job, study for her master’s degree, and attend to her duties as a mother. I sometimes thought I was crazy to put myself through this. But in the end it has been worth the effort,” Monica said.
“The Ok Tedi Fubilan pit with its high slopes and highly variable rock conditions, and complex structural and hydrological conditions makes the mine a very geotechnical challenging environment to work in. Obtaining relevant post graduate qualification in this field is vital as we are constantly challenged to use our skills and knowledge in different ways to understand the mine and reduce risk,” she said.
“I sincerely would like to thank the Company for allowing me to benefit from Ok Tedi’s external training program and I would hope that the Company will continue to support further education for other employees.
Monica said she was able to reach this goal because of the love and support of her family and support and encouragement from her managers. “This is not just a personal achievement but also for my family, my employer and my country as well,” Monica said.
“We are particularly proud of Monica’s achievements as she started in our Graduate Development Scheme soon after completing a Geological Science degree with Honours from the University of Western Australia in Perth on a sponsorship offered by the Australian High Commission. Monica was then nominated by her team leader for the OTML external postgraduate sponsorship program to further develop her skills to be a qualified Geotechnical Engineer” said Managing Director and CEO Peter Graham.
“Ok Tedi is an equal opportunity employer and actively promotes and supports female participation in the workplace and is committed to developing and up-skilling the national workforce,” Mr Graham said.
Photo Captions:
Photo 1: Monica Koek at work at Ok Ted Mine.

Posted by Staff Reporter : PNG Today on 1:18 AM. Filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Share this Article


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