Plos' good work pays dividends

08 July 2008 | Story by Myolisi Gophe

Andrea Plos
The best: Andrea Plos' outstanding work for the Department of Zoology has won her the Derek Krige Medal.

UCT staffer Andrea Plos has been awarded the Derek Krige Medal in recognition of her "outstanding" achievements in the field of technical support to marine science in South Africa.

The South African Network for Coastal and Oceanic Research handed the prestigious honour, which is given once in four years, if there is a deserving person, to Plos on 2 July during the 13th Southern Africa Marine Science Symposium in Cape Town.

For over 10 years, Plos, the principal technical officer in the Department of Zoology, has been providing students with technical and logistic support for their marine research. She has been organising and running the department's ski boat and almost all the scientific diving operations.

In motivating for her nomination, students and staff at UCT described the contribution of Plos, president of the Employees Union, as "extraordinary and selfless".

A commercial diver and a skipper, Plos said she was surprised by the award and attributed it to the "great opportunities" she is exposed to.

"I'm fortunate to work in a department where I love what I do," she explains. "Students and staff always come up with cutting-edge research and I enjoy the challenges to find technical solutions to their unusual and diverse projects. But, I can say, they keep me young and fit, or dirty and tired," she laughed.

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