Stephanie Cobbaert

participant postgraduate 2021 - 2022

After graduating as a Business Engineer at the University of Ghent in 2021, I was absolutely not sure what direction I wanted to go with this degree and whether I was ready to start working. What I did know was that I had gained an increased interest in our climate crisis and renewable energy technologies over the past years, and that I wanted to enhance my knowledge and skills on these topics. I started looking for masters and postgraduates and concluded that this Postgraduate ‘Energy and Climate’ was the perfect fit for me, compared to other interesting masters abroad.

The different modules this postgraduate offers cover a broad range of topics, from the physical basis of climate change, to the societal challenges it causes as well as mitigation options, energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies to mitigate climate change. The lecturers are very diverse, from University professors to field experts from all kinds of companies in the sector. Since there is no specific background required, our class is very diverse: from recent graduates to working people of all ages. It is never too late to learn!

The programme helped me to take my first steps on my career path. I discovered that sustainability was the way forward for me and that I wanted to keep learning more. I chose an extra module ‘Applied Project’, for which I did an internship at Alpro. I worked together with their sustainability team and this experience guided me even further in my future direction. This program also showed me the different ways to put the acquired knowledge in practice: from implementing policies in governmental organizations to technical consultancy or sustainable development in private companies.

Putting knowledge into practice through my three-month internship was the most enriching experience about this year. Most importantly, I gained confidence in my knowledge and skills on the work floor, and I am not afraid to speak up even though I am less experienced than other people in my surroundings. We can all learn from each other, no matter what age or background!

With future students I would like to share the following: Don’t force yourself to something because people expect certain things of you, do what feels best for you!