DG+Design is excited to welcome Faiza Haq to the team as Policy and Communications Specialist! She is currently a graduate student in the Energy and Environment program at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). Faiza will be assisting clients with clean energy focused content and market research.
We interviewed Faiza to learn more about her. Check out her answers below.
I knew that I wanted to work in the climate change sector for the longest time, but was unsure what I wanted my specific focus to be within it. The Energy and Environment program at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) provides both technical and policy-oriented classes on energy and climate issues. I knew that the diversity of the classes would allow me to explore different topics and find my niche passion. Plus, I would get to do this all while living in New York City!
It would definitely be Energy System Fundamentals taught by Travis Bradford. Prior to Columbia SIPA, I had minimal knowledge about the energy sector. Hence, I was drawn to the class because it was advertised as a 14-week crash course on all things energy, and I had enrolled into graduate school to learn about new topics. Thankfully, the class lived up to its reputation and ultimately fueled my interest in the energy sector (no pun intended).
Growing up in Dhaka, Bangladesh, I was acutely aware that climate change is not something that will affect us in a couple of decades—it is happening right now and millions of people in the country are affected by it on a day-to-day basis. After taking a couple of courses about energy and talking to people in the sector, I became very aware that one of the most tangible ways we can lower our global emissions and provide millions of people electricity is through renewable energy. Therefore, my passion for the sector comes specifically from my home roots.
The energy sector can be complicated for the average person. There are a lot of emerging technologies, policies, and developments that make it difficult for people to understand how they can play a role in the renewable energy sector. I want to help our clients translate information about their clean energy products into digestible and easy-to-read materials. The more accessible renewable energy products become to consumers, the better it is for our clients and the Earth!
I think all the innovation happening on grid edge software and infrastructure is remarkable and is what will make the clean energy revolution possible. The U.S electricity grid system is one of the oldest technologies in the world, but has experienced little to no innovation due to complex policy roadblocks and steep financial investment that is required to upgrade the system. Grid edge technologies like smart inverters, energy storage systems, and smart building controls provide a simpler solution to a complicated problem, and is allowing the industry to move towards more decentralization.
I think I would love to travel to Patagonia. I enjoy looking at mountains and hiking so it would be the perfect combination.
I used to run an Instagram food blog when I lived in Bangladesh! I featured all the interesting eateries you can find around Dhaka.
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