"Visiting the Eyjafjallajökull glacier in Iceland had an immediate and profound impact on my future career."
How do you want to leave your impact on the world?
Ever since I was a kid I had this very vague goal/idea that I wanted to change the world. I had no idea how I wanted to do that or in what way would have the greatest effect on others; I only knew that I wanted to make the world a better place to live. In High School I developed very strong math and physics skills and started thinking about engineering. I decided alternative energy engineering would be the best way to utilize my skills in order to make the world a better place to live. While I was in Iceland with The Green Program, I had the opportunity to physically see how far the glacier had receded in such a short time. Seeing the vastness of the glacier and how quickly it was melting had a huge impact on me and I'm now doing everything I can to promote sustainability and teach others how important it is. I think being able to experience all of this at the age of 18 gives me a huge opportunity to make the most of my time in college and really refine my goal in alternative energy.
Describe your dream job or career.
My dream job would be working with others to make the energy generation as sustainable in possible. This would involved developing new solar and wind technology in order to make it as cost effective and efficient as possible. My goal is to have these technologies be more economically advantageous as well as environmentally.
Describe a personal experience that has directly or indirectly influenced your career path.
Visiting the Eyjafjallajökull glacier in Iceland had an immediate and profound impact on my future career. I had always been aware of the effects of climate change but I had never had the opportunity to see them on such a vast scale. One of our guides showed us where the glacier used to reach out to only 25 years ago and trying to comprehend such a massive body of ice moving that far in such a short time really shocked me.
Tell us about your Capstone project experience and your journey, your team, the ideation and implementation.
Our project utilized a process in which we can convert carbon dioxide emissions into ethanol. This project really hit home with us because most of us were engineers and had a strong background in chemistry. We also knew that, despite our wishes, fossil fuel based energy isn't going to go away super quickly. Our project focused on making these power plants more environmentally friendly. We feel the idea was very sustainable because it contributed to a couple different goals at the same time. Ethanol would be a better fuel source to use and we would create it by reducing CO2 emissions. After calculating all of the operating costs using a case study in New Mexico, the idea turned out to be highly feasible and economically viable.
You're hosting an intimate dinner party. Select 3 figures you would invite.
Elon Musk, because I think his goal for world aligns with mine; Alan Turing, because I'm fascinated by the way he thinks and the questions he asked; and Gandalf, because he is full of wisdom and knowledge and he'd be super interesting to talk to.