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29-Year-Old Attains Doctor in Philosophy (Ph.D) Degree

By Lucy Kopana – EMTV News, Lae

29-year-old Dr Cathy Koloa became the second female to graduate with her Doctor in Philosophy (Ph.D) degree from the Papua New Guinea University of Technology (PNGUOT) in Lae. Dr Koloa said the journey towards attaining her Ph.D has not been easy. It required determination to fulfil her goal, with lots of support from family and friends.

“It was a struggle but I had a lot of help from my family and friends. I would like to thank God and also my family and my friends for helping me with this. I didn’t do this on my own. I had a lot of help from a lot of individuals.”

Dr Koloa’s thesis titled ‘Hydro-Morphometric Analysis and Hazard Assessment of Major River Basins in PNG using Remote Sensing and GIS Technology’ was a study of land areas and river basins including the hazard-prone in the areas studied.

“By carrying out hazard assessments within these river basins, we plan to determine which areas are good for agriculture, which areas are good for forestry and which areas need improvements in the infrastructure and development within those hazard prone areas especially areas that are prone to floods.”

The completion of this study saw Dr Koloa attaining her PhD in Geometrics from the Department of Surveying and Land studies. She was also supported by Trukai Industries during the course of the PhD program.

Dr Cathy Koloa comes from Rigo and Kairuku in the Central Province, and is the second of five children. She graduated with her undergraduate degree in 2013 and continued with her postgraduate studies. She was inspired to attain her Ph.D by Unitech’s first female Ph.D graduate, Dr Gwendolyn Ban.

“When she achieved her doctorate, I was motivated to move on from there.”

A proud and emotional father, Maino Koloa, said there have been a lot of challenges however, he thanked his daughter for her tireless efforts in achieving her goals. Mr Koloa said the achievement is not only his daughter’s and the family’s however, it is to better the nation.

“I want to encourage her to move further to assist in the development of Papua New Guinea in her own field.”

As a young Papua New Guinean Dr Koloa said one has to be determined and passionate to achieve their goals.

“Sometimes you will be distracted, sometimes you will give up, but you have to keep focus. Remind yourself of your dreams and goals and go out and keep working.”

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