The University of Alberta’s 10-metre-long plesiosaur cast has been named in tribute to a former Sylvan Lake resident and Alberta’s chief medical officer of health.
Dr. Deeno Hinshaw, the ancient marine reptile, hangs prominently from the ceiling in the main science building on campus in Edmonton.
The name was decided through a nomination process and voted on by students.
A 30-foot long cast of a plesiosaur and a beloved landmark in CCIS has an official nickname following a student-led naming contest: Dr. Deeno Hinshaw. Thank you to all the students who voted, and the U of A Palaeontological Society for leading the contest! #UAlberta #FossilFriday pic.twitter.com/G6E8FrRxao
— UAlbertaScience (@ualbertaScience) April 17, 2020
“I think this really shows just how much people want to recognize Dr. (Deena) Hinshaw in some kind of way,” said Catie Strong, a vice-president of the U of A paleontology society.
“And even if this is kind of a small gesture, I think it shows that people are very appreciative of her work.”
Hinshaw, a graduate of Sylvan Lake’s H.J. Cody High School, has been leading Alberta through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Strong said the idea behind the contest, which was run by the society, came as the pandemic first began to unfold and campus was being shut down.
“We thought this would be a good way to basically keep students connected and have some kind of fun, lighthearted thing that students could get involved in,” said Strong.
She said about 200 names were suggested by students and almost 600 votes were cast in the final poll.
The runner-up was Indiana Bones, which Strong says was also a pretty funny option.