Geophysicist from Kuantan awarded Energy and Earth Resources fellowship

Picture from The New Straits Times

Geophysicist from Kuantan awarded Energy and Earth Resources fellowship

BY: Patrick Beech

Kuantan-born A. Previna is among 25 outstanding students from nine countries to be awarded the prestigious Energy and Earth Resources (EER) fellowship at the University of Texas, Austin in the United States. 

She will pursue her postgraduate Master's degree at the university and has also secured the position of a Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) during her stay at the campus. 

Growing up in a low-income family, where her mechanic father was the sole breadwinner, motivated the 28-year-old to study hard and she is determined to change her family's fortunes. 

Previna said her journey has not been easy and she will never forget the endless encouragement from her mother N. Kerisnamah, 62, a housewife. 

Previna, who is the only child in the family, said after SPM she pursued her foundation programme and degree in Petroleum Geoscience at Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP), Perak. 

"Both my parents only completed their primary school education. My mother had always emphasised studies and reminded me that only with excellent academic results, I will be able to pursue my dreams, go to university and give the family a better life," she said. 

After securing a scholarship from Yayasan Pahang, she graduated with first-class honours in 2018 and joined an oil and gas company. 

After a year's training in Madrid, Spain, she joined a private firm as a graduate engineer in 2019 and became a geophysicist in 2022. 

The outdoor enthusiast, who will be leaving for the US for her 18-month fellowship programme on Aug 9 said her deep passion for climate change, the environment and net-zero carbon emissions prompted her to take up the career path and she hopes to return to serve the country.