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A UNSW Canberra staff member has been awarded an Australia Day Medallion, in recognition for her work building and maintaining the long-lasting relationship between UNSW Canberra and the Australian Defence Organisation.
Kus Pandey, the Centre Manager for the Australian Centre for the Study of Armed Conflict and Society (ACSACS), was presented with the Medallion by UNSW Canberra Rector Professor Michael Frater at a staff morning tea in early February.
For Ms Pandey, the award came as a complete surprise, with colleagues and her partner managing to keep the accolade a secret right up until it was presented.
“I had no idea I’d be receiving the award – I twigged about a week or so beforehand that there was a secret being kept from me, but I was told to stop asking about it!” she said.
The Medallion nomination was supported by Air Marshall Leo Davies, Chief of Air Force, who described Ms Pandey as ‘energetic and enthusiastic with superb organisational and interpersonal skills’.
The Medallion also recognised Ms Pandey’s contribution to the Sir James Rowland Air Power Seminars, which were held throughout 2018.
Receiving the Medallion meant that Ms Pandey had to take a step outside her comfort zone, explaining that she’s “not good at being the centre of attention”.
She also recognised that while she was the recipient of the Medallion, the teamwork from the entire ACSACS team produced the fantastic results that were seen last year.
“I’m enormously privileged and happy to work here at UNSW Canberra and so closely with ADFA as well,” Ms Pandey said.
“I’m especially grateful to Professor Rob McLaughlin for welcoming me into this team, and to WGCDR Lewis Frederickson for nominating me for the award. I’ve really enjoyed working not only with the University staff and students but the ADFA and Defence staff too.
“I’m truly humbled by it.”