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interview
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I am here to challenge myself - to see how far I can go

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Laura Perez Casado, Master’s in Renewable Energy

Laura Perez Casado

Spanish

Master’s in Renewable Energy

Aalto University

About

After her bachelor’s degree, Laura Perez Casado was looking for something different. Not just two more years of the same. She wanted a programme to provide her with technical knowledge… but also the hands-on experience to see how this knowledge can be applied to solve real-world problems AND create business!

Interview

Why did you the MSc in Energy for Smart Cities programme?
Finishing my bachelor’s, I realised I did not want a master’s programme that follows the same structure. I thought of applying for a job, since I truly believe that the best way to learn is throughout experience, but then I found the InnoEnergy Master’s School. The field of energy for smart cities seemed like a perfect fit, as it offers you way more than a typical master does. They really focus on you… how to grow YOU as a person – not just the knowledge part.
Is there any special projects or a degree thesis that you are working on at the moment – or have worked on before?
I worked on a really cool project last year. We took advantage of the excess heat created in data centres and moved it, via a heat pump, into the district heating system. We solved a heating problem for the community, but also for the data centres. It’s this kind of symbiotic solution that gets me really excited about what problems we can solve in the future!
How would you like to contribute to a sustainable future?
I’m still figuring out what my contribution can be – but I do know that I’m capable of more than I was before the programme, able to work on a team, be a part of a collaborative effort. I know now that it’s not just about me doing something – but about being able to work with others to achieved something great.
Do you feel you were able to interact with InnoEnergy start-ups and industry partners during or after your studies?
Definitely. I was even able to assist at the Start-Up Days in Eindhoven. I especially enjoyed it since we really interacted with professionals from this sector, but also with people that were already working on their start-up. The best thing? It was the first time I could see what it would be like to work at doing something you are passionate about. It was a really enriching experience.
Has the programme atmosphere give you any inspiration for products, services or companies?
I’d like to highlight the Innovation Journey here. It’s incredible how imaginative and original people can be at solving a problem. This gives you REAL insight to how the innovation world works. My specific project using industrial symbiosis was a major breakthrough for me. When you discover a problem that can be solved while simultaneously solving another problem, it’s amazing. I’d like to go further into symbiotic solutions to create sustainable communities.
In what way, do you believe your 2 years here will contribute to your professional career?
I can only imagine. Just after finishing the Innovation Journey, I’ve really picked up some major soft skills that I know are going to be very useful. The skills that I will need to get out there in the business world, to critically examine and identify good opportunities and then effectively act on them. This programme is forming me as a person, giving me the opportunity to really challenge myself and see how far I can go.