Xiaoyang Yu

Name: Xiaoyang Yu
From: China
Studying: Master of Wind Power Project Management (magister)

Why did you choose this education?
Before I studied here, I was a guitarist in an underground heavy metal band. The Scandinavian melody death metal originated in Gothenburg, Sweden. So, this is one reason why I decided to come to Sweden. I have a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and I wanted to study wind power mainly because I find the enormous wind turbine super impressive. I always marvel at the beauty of the mechanism and I strongly believe our future is going to be non-fossil fuel living. I want to make a little effort to achieve this future goal.

What has been the most fun and interesting thing about the education so far?
Studying WindPro, which is a powerful software to analyze wind resources, manage the wind turbine’s position and identify the negative effect. While I am practicing WindPro, I feel like my knowledge came to reality. With this software you can manage your own wind farm like a simulator game.

What has been most challenging?
Sweden’s winter. I could write a page about this challenge, but I guess you all have already known about it.

What is the best thing about studying at Uppsala University?
It’s hard to find the best because everything is fantastic. But I have to say the coffee in our canteen is fabulous, especially before the morning’s class.

What is your goal with the education?
My life credo is "Every little effort for a better world makes a difference." My goal is to make my little effort to promote clean energy, and in that way make the world cleaner.

Quick questions
Favorite place in your student city?
Seaside!

What do you hope to do in 5 years?
Working in a renewable energy company or playing in an underground metal band.

Lakshitha Daham Makewita

Name: Lakshitha Daham Makewita
From: Sri Lanka
Studying: Master Programme in Wind Power Project Management

Why did you choose this education?
I have always been curious about the responsible usage of the earth’s limited resources and the potential of renewable energy for sustainable development. As I was navigating my professional life, I was fortunate enough to be part of the project development team of the first ever large-scale wind farm in Sri Lanka. The experience showed me that there are much to be learn in terms of wind power development and how crucial the methodical execution is to achieve the desired project goals. Even though I had been in the industry for little more than 10 years, I took the hard decision to go back to university for my master studies. I felt that the study outcomes of this programme would complement my experience and the fact that it is conducted by the prestigious Uppsala University solidified the decision to do so.     

Does the education meet your expectations?
The Swedish education system is quite the opposite to the education system which I had been used to. Therefore, it is fair to say that the expectations which I had at the time of starting this programme has not yet been met. But the study experience so far has broadened my horizons not only academically but also my approach to everyday life. The group projects to individual assignments and seminars to personal reflections are the bread and butter of the programme. They are not designed to mold the student into preconceived model but grant wisdom to cave a path of his/her own. Therefore, I feel that my original expectations are not valid anymore and hence, when it’s time to graduate I would be able to tackle problems which are yet to be identified. 

What has been the most fun and interesting thing about the education so far?
The numerus opportunities to get to know the fellow international students and have discussions ranging from how their day has been so far to their views on circular economy and sustainable development. Even though the Campus Gotland is a very small premises when compared with Uppsala, I was fortunate enough to meet students from all four corners of the world, not to mention the large community of Swedish students. The international environment allows me to grasp the different viewpoints of the same world we share among ourselves.

How was the first time, how did you get to know new people?
The welcome ceremony at St. Nicolai Ruin was vibrant and engaging. Later I was told that most of the students got to know me first, before I got to know them. What happened was, the master of ceremony, at the time dressed as a clown, tricked me and 3 other students up to the stage to contribute to one of his acts. Apart from the welcome ceremony and Sustainability Trip, the excursion organized in collaboration with other educational programmes of Campus Gotland allowed me to expand my social circle. In addition, being a recipient of one of the Swedish Institute Scholarships, I was a part of like-minded students who organized and take part in various events on leadership, sustainable development, etc.     

What has been most challenging?
Although Sweden as a country being nothing but welcoming, I found that getting used to the new way of life was the most challenging. The support I received from the academic staff, university administration and Swedish Institute were invaluable to settle down to the new life in Sweden. I later found out that this is true not only to me but also to many international students.    

What is the best thing about studying at Uppsala University?
The best thing about studying at Uppsala University is that you are and will be a part of a long and living history which dates to 1477. You are a member of the same student body who once hosted the first known student of Sweden, Olle Johansson, who started his education in the same year the university was established and the first woman to study in a Swedish university, Betty Pettersson, who was admitted in early 1870s. Some of Olle’s lecture notes are still preserved in Uppsala University Museum while Betty’s story tells a will power of a girl with humble beginnings who secured the support of the King of Sweden to get herself accepted to the university. And I think the history of Olle and Betty made an interesting and fruitful turn when the small campus on the island where they are from became the newest addition to the university on 2013 as Uppsala University Campus Gotland.         

What is your goal with the education?
I consider the completion of this programme as one of the steps to achieving my goal of becoming an expert in renewable energy development and grid integration.

Quick questions
Favorite place in your student city?
Norderklint during sunset (the small cliff produces mesmerizing views of the city during sunset which have Visby Cathedral in foreground while the medieval style rooftops and vibrant sky in the background).

Best student tradition at Uppsala University?
The academic quarter, or as they say in Swedish: Akademisk kvart.

What do you hope to do in 5 years?
Use my expertise to further increase the capacity of renewable energy in the Sri Lankan energy system and reduce the dependency on imported fossil fuel as well as coal.

Vendula Jorgensen

a photo of Vendula JorgensenName: Vendula Jorgensen
From: Czechia
Programme: Master's Programme in Wind Power Project Management
Graduation year: 2013

What have you been doing since your graduation from the Master’s Programme in Wind Power Project Management?
"
After graduation in 2013, I started as a wind energy consultant on a German offshore wind foundation test project. From 2018 onwards, I have been expanding my activities from the wind power sector into management consulting for German utility companies. In 2019, I enriched my consulting life with a brand-new client: a baby, and am enjoying the absolute novelty of motherhood."

Where do you work today and what main tasks do you have? 
"While being on maternity leave today, I am looking forward to returning to my current employer Accenture, one the largest consulting companies that helps other businesses re-invent and digitise their activities. My tasks fall into the project management support side and involve data visualisations, tracking budgets and project delivery milestones as well as general research tasks. I also conceptualise and run workshops with various stakeholders, which is where the knowledge gained from courses on stakeholder management and planning come into practice."

Why did you choose to study the Master’s Programme in Wind Power Project Management?
"Prior to the studies, I graduated from Master’s Programme English and Russian Studies and dedicated about 7 years to working with foreign languages as a teacher, translator and occasional guide and interpreter. At some point, I achieved my goals and decided to add something completely different to my portfolio: wind! The main reason was that I wished to start working in renewables. Of course, the location itself played an important role as Gotland is a real wind power base where you can visit a wind power plant easily, plus it is also a beautiful place. When I applied for the programme, I was specifically fond of the fact that there were both theoretical and practical exercises outlined, which then took place during the actual studies."

What kind of experiences and lessons do you bring with you from your education?
"Having come from the humanities background, I was well familiar with qualitative research and type of work. However, I needed to boost the quantitative side, which often pushed me to the edge. Regarding the WPPM, the lessons I bring with me are mainly those on consenting and planning, stakeholder management and community engagement, which have been helpful in my jobs. I have used acquired project management skills in all the energy projects I have been involved in. Moreover, the studies also boosted my digital skills. The practical exercises, excursions and field trips helped me to cement the learnings into my understanding."

What do you enjoy the most about your current job? Do you have any future hopes and dreams regarding your work situation?
"I am happy that I can be a part of the German energy transition, see how the energy world really works and be involved in real projects, which are mostly run in an agile mode and always deal with digitalisation. I am around people with lots of knowledge and experience and I feel constantly challenged as the given projects develop, progress, change and close. I can also learn things I did not even know I did not know – here I mean mainly new work tools, frameworks and the topic of (technology) innovation. My dream is that I manage to combine my career with my family, which I hope will both continue growing."

Do you have any recommendations or tips for those who think about applying to the programme and to those who soon graduate from the program?
"For those applying: have a clear idea about your motivation why you want to study the programme. Reach out to the staff or alumni if you have questions about whether your motivation matches with the syllabus. My second recommendation is to think of ways how you can achieve your goals already during the studies instead of after."

"For those who soon graduate: “Everything is an interview” – presentation of yourself already in the class during the studies, casual talk at a conference with an industry representative, networking anywhere as well as your online presence and many others. My second tip would be to keep a journal of your thoughts and aspirations regarding your career, go over your notes regularly and make a self asssesment how you are progressing on your goals." 

Veaceslav Crasilscic

Veaceslav Crasilscic stands in front of wind power
Name:
 Veaceslav Crasilscic
From: originally from Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
Programme: Master's Programme in Wind Power Project Management
Graduation year: 2016

What have you been doing since your graduation from the Master’s Programme in Wind Power Project Management?
"After graduation, I have started an internship with the wind turbine manufacturer - Goldwind Science & Technology in Beijing, China. While being part of the International Business Support Department, I have used fresh acquired knowledge at WPPM (Wind Power Project Management) Master’s classes and previous work experience in order to support department projects move further in expanding Goldwind international market share. After completing the internship, I relocated back to Europe and joined the world leader in cable systems industry - Prysmian Group in the regional commercial department."

Where do you work today and what main tasks do you have? 
"It is during WPPM studies where I learnt first about the technologies and solutions offered by my current employer, Prysmian Group, for the renewable energy industry with its range of cables and systems for power transmission and distribution. I was hired as part of the talent program SELL IT, also due to my background in business development. My tasks mainly involve consulting and providing the most suitable products, solutions and technical offers for conventional and renewable energy projects (mostly wind and solar) in Central Eastern Europe."

Why did you choose to study the Master’s Programme in Wind Power Project Management?
"I decided to pursue renewable energy studies in order to learn how to maximise the potential of clean energy sources and promote sustainable development. The decision to go with with the WPPM Master’s programme was fostered by the fast growing investments in renewables in the South-Eastern Europe, the region I am coming from. Not the least important is the fact that WPPM program promised to focus both on technical and business subjects, partly through field work on Gotland, island with an already successfully established wind farm infrastructure."

What kind of experiences and lessons do you bring with you from your education?
"The studies at Uppsala University, Campus Gotland came with a wide mix of theoretical and practical activities which helped in understanding better the concepts taught in class. Numerous field trips at Gotland main energy generation and distribution sites and guest lectures from local specialists and alumni created a clearer insight on the renewable energy industry. Apart from external sources, I learned a lot from my colleagues of different academic backgrounds as we, more or less, complemented each other in group tasks. Except studies of wind energy industry, the knowledge gained at Uppsala University during WPPM Master’s programme prepared me for work in a wide range of activities as I learned about commercial activities, business strategies and policy frameworks in the energy industry worldwide."

What do you enjoy the most about your current job? Do you have any future hopes and dreams regarding your work situation?
"My current job in the energy industry offers the opportunity to work in a fast-changing environment, with permanent innovation of business models and technologies that deliver electrical energy. In a way, our contribution to important regional projects offers a state of personal fulfilment, as one understands that access to energy improves quality of life and has a positive impact on society. I hope that the positive trend of investing in power grid upgrades, onshore and offshore renewable energy projects upgrades will continue to grow and create more opportunities to succeed in the industrial environment and offer upgraded technologies for power distribution."

Do you have any recommendations or tips for those who think about applying to the programme and to those who soon graduate from the program?
"WPPM Master’s programme has a wide alumni network, do not hesitate to get in contact with former students via email or social media for inquiries or recommendations. Also, my advice to the students who will soon graduate from the program is  remain constantly curious and look way in advance for opportunites like internships, research work or jobs. While those who are thinking about applying to the programme, I’d like to assure that the professors and Uppsala University staff will create the proper environment for learning and research, while providing advice and connections for building a right career path after graduation." 

January 2020

Alumni interview David Warner

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Alumni interview Frauke

Alumni interview Marc Noel

Alumi interview Sören Lang

Last modified: 2022-06-22