Dr Nan Zhang (PhD Earth Science and Engineering 2012) returned to China following his time at Imperial and now works as a Business Development Manager at BP, focussing on gas and LNG.
Can you tell us about your time at Imperial?
“I studied at Imperial College London from 2008 to 2012. It was very important to me to live abroad for a certain time and set up a good foundation to work with an international enterprise. My studies at Imperial brought me to the energy industry. The research work I undertook in the upstream technical discipline formed a good foundation for me and an understanding of the industry that I was able to further expand along the full value chain and convert from technical to commercial.”
Tell us a bit about the work you’re doing now.
“I am currently a Business Development Manager at BP in China. My focus is on the Gas and LNG business. My responsibility is to look for new investment opportunities for BP in China and monitor the existing operating joint ventures in China from shareholder perspective.”
What does a typical day look like for you now?
“Every day is different. I may start the work at the office to do a telephone conference, or have to travel to meet a potential counterparty. I do enjoy the quick pace with BP.”
What are your plans for the future?
“I want to be a leader in the energy industry in China and to make a positive impact on the industry.”
What would be your advice for current students?
“To think about what you would like to do as early as possible. If you are not clear at the current stage, do the work at your hand as well as possible to create opportunities for the future.”
How did you decide to return to China after graduation?
"It was difficult when I finished my studies at Imperial to look forward to the next step and decide whether to stay in the UK or move back to China. I had an offer from CGGVeritas in the UK to become a professional Geophysicist there. I have to say my family was a drive for me to go back to China just after graduation but I also believed there would be development opportunities for me in China if I leveraged my experience of Imperial’s research work and my life overseas. So far I am happy with the decision and look forward to going back to London and seeing Imperial again."
What are you most proud of in your life?
“Getting married to my wife Shuzhou Jiang (who is also an Imperial alumnus).”