PORT VILA: A young Engineer originally from the island of Savai’i in Samoa was last night awarded the regions most prestigious award for young water professionals.
Matamua Katrina Mariner who is the Water and Wells System Engineer for the American Samoa Power Authority (ASPA) was surprised when her name was announced as the winner of the Young Professional Award during a special reception at the 12th Pacific Water and Wastewater Conference & Expo 2019 in Vanuatu last night.
“I am very humbled and thankful to have been selected and recognized by fellow Pacific Islanders a for this Award,” Matamua told Pacific Environment Weekly. Raised in Salelologa, Savaii, Matamua attributed her upbringing in her success. “Never forget where you are from, I was raised on the rocks of Salelologa wharf. From a young age, I have always had a passion for water and environment. I am from Savaii, I am a Pacific Islander and that I am proud of,” she said.
Matamua was recognized for her contribution as an Engineer to ASPA’s water engineering and construction projects through her tireless efforts in planning, engineering design, permitting and construction management supervision for water well drilling projects, new water storage tank construction, waterline connection projects and new water utility infrastructure. The Award is the only regional intergovernmental award for young water professionals, and is a coveted recognition for young engineers in the sector.
Before moving to work in the Water and Sanitation Sector in American Samoa, Matamua was employed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment for the Government of Samoa under the Water Resources Division for water resources management and technical monitoring and regulatory assistance. Later she moved to the Samoa Water Authority’s (SWA) Technical Division to work in water engineering and utility construction projects.
She graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science from Auckland University in New Zealand and a Master’s degree specializing in Water Resources Management and Sanitary Engineering from Leibniz University in Germany.
She is a former student of St Theresas Primary School in Fusi, Safotulafai on the island of Savaii and attended both Robert Louis Stevenson and Samoa College before pursuing further studies in New Zealand.