What's It Really Like

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Students are invited to meet with energy professionals in small, informal groups to learn about everyday life in their careers, their career paths, the current climate in their fields, and insights into the future. ND Energy also collaborates with Notre Dame’s Career Center to help undergraduates sort through choices in the growing energy sector.

Small group sessions held in 2018 featured:

Solar Research: Dr. Prashant Kamat's Laboratory - Graduate student Rebecca Scheidt and undergraduate student Elisabeth Kerns talked about life in the “Rad Lab” doing research on perovskite films for solar panels.

Nuclear Research: Dr. Peter Burns' Laboratory - Graduate and undergraduate students discussed their work with uranium, plutonium, and other radioactive chemicals.

Sustainability Careers: Office of Sustainability - Office of Sustainability staff talked about relevant career paths and offered suggestions on how to find a job in the field of sustainability.

Wind Energy: Dr. Eric Matlis' Laboratory - Undergraduate researcher Breanna Belz, graduate researcher Alexander Arndt, and Prof. Matlis discussed opportunities wind energy research at Notre Dame.

Catalysis Research: Dr. Jason Hicks' Laboratory - Graduate students Jessica Muhlenkamp and Galiya Magazova discussed their work on catalysis for the CISTAR grant.

In previous years, students have met in small groups with energy professionals to ask about the details of their work lives. Participants included Lisa Zyonse, Pennie Waggener, and Jordan Ridenour, Consumers Energy; Magaret Merkel and Sean McCloskey, Naval Nuclear Lab; John Kinney, Director of Advanced Technology Business Development, General Electric Aviation; Therese Dorau, Director of Sustainability, City of South Bend; Vince Barletto, Sr. Project Engineer, Cypress Creek Renewables; Subhash Shinde, Associate Director of ND Energy and formerly Research and Development Manager at Sandia National Labs and Senior Scientist/Engineer at IBM; Thomas Degnan, Tony and Sarah Earley Professor of Energy and the Environment, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Notre Dame, and formerly of ExxonMobil and 3M; and Katie Otterbeck, Campaign Organizer at Impact/Environment Colorado.

For more information or to get involved, contact Anne Berges Pillai, Education and Outreach Associate Program Director, at 574-631-9106 or apillai@nd.edu.