Global Energy ManagementKirsten Brown

Kirsten, a graduate of our MSc Global Energy Management, tells us about what it's like to be a student Strathclyde...

What were you doing before the MSc? What made you choose the programme at Strathclyde?

Before my MSc, I was studying for an LLB in Scots Law at the University of Glasgow. I took the opportunity to study Law of the Sea, Petroleum Law and International Climate Change and Energy Law, at the University of Oslo during an Erasmus exchange. This legally centred education in energy led me to pursue a career in the energy industry.

The MSc Global Energy Management allowed me to learn about the energy markets, energy economics, and market and business structures. These courses allowed me to broaden my knowledge of the overall energy industry and develop a background in economics. The University of Strathclyde has an excellent reputation for engineering, technology, economics and innovation, which I knew would motivate me on my desired career path. Strathclyde was also one of the few universities in the world that offered this type of master’s. 

Was there anything about the course content/classes you particularly enjoyed? Did you develop any particular skills?

The course contains a range of modules such as energy technology, energy economics and energy policy. Because the course was based on working within the industry, a majority of the assessments were presentations or reports. This allowed me to advance my writing and presentation skills that I would use whilst in industry. Also, as there were students from such a mix of backgrounds (from engineering to international business), you were able to learn and appreciate alternative viewpoints. 

The breadth of information you learn from this course stands students in good stead for their future in the energy industry.

How did the course in fit with your longer aspirations for study/career in the future? What are you up to just now?

Until recently, I was working within an OFTO (Offshore Transmission Owner) Transaction Team for an offshore wind farm developer. I am just about to begin a PhD at the University of Strathclyde’s Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship, specialising in mine water geothermal district heating for low-income communities. I never thought I would pursue a PhD but because of my master’s course the door was opened for me to continue in academia. I am really excited to contribute to Scotland’s low-carbon transition and to be working at the Hunter Centre, as its reputation precedes it!

What is it like to be a student at Strathclyde and in the city of Glasgow?

Having now studied at three different universities, being a student at Strathclyde was a fantastic and unrivalled experience. The University has such a huge range of sports clubs and societies for every interest, so there is something for everyone. Every person I knew who was involved in these societies, thoroughly enjoyed them. As well as this, the teaching and careers staff are so supportive of you, your studies and future career intentions. I was given the opportunity to slightly tailor my learning experience around renewables and the low-carbon side of the energy sector, which was where my interests lay. 

I have been living in Glasgow for six years now, and I am not bored of it! There is so much to do in and around the city, including lots of concert venues to visit, sports teams to support, and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs only 30 minutes outside of Glasgow. 

What advice would you give to prospective students?

Throw yourself into everything at University, you won’t regret it! Make sure to do your research about the courses before you apply. The master’s courses are quite intense, but if it is a course that holds your interest you will thoroughly enjoy it. Also, take advantage of all of the careers sessions because it will help you to find your path.