What work experience/internships did you have before beginning with Imperial College Business School?
Prior to joining Imperial, I worked as a consultant intern for 12 months at Deloitte. I implemented and tested software (SAP) for a multinational energy client operating in Mexico, Brazil, Spain and Italy. In addition, I have worked as a volunteer treasurer and monitor in an educational organisation in Barcelona, focused on implementing social and environmental projects for children aged six to 18. I have also worked as a private tutor for groups preparing students for A-levels in subjects such as maths, physics and chemistry.
Why did you decide to study an MSc Climate Change, Management & Finance at Imperial College Business School?
During the last year of my degree in Aerospace Engineering, I studied electives modules including Wind Turbines and Energy Efficiency Systems. I have always been interested in environmental and social problems, but after finishing these two modules and working at Deloitte in the energy sector, I realised I want to work on sustainability. This MSc offers the perfect combination between science and business, which was exactly what I was looking for at the moment of the application.
Did you receive a scholarship?
I feel very grateful to have received the Imperial College Business School Scholarship, a great financial help. The scholarship motivates me to keep working and to start building some of the projects I had in mind before joining Imperial in London.
What aspects of the programme do you most enjoy the most?
What I enjoy the most about this programme is the combination of science and business. Almost all of the finance and management modules are taught completely touching on sustainability. In addition, the fact that some of the lecturers are from the Grantham Institute gives a unique value to the programme. From my point of view, having both excellent researchers and business leaders as professors brings together the whole picture of the consequences of climate change.
Which has been your favourite module so far and why?
My favourite module so far has been Business Economics, Climate Change and the Environment with Dr Mirabelle Muûls. During my undergraduate, I barely studied business topics, which made this module a completely new experience. Also, Dr Muûls has a particular way of teaching that I really enjoyed. We prepared for the lectures by doing some readings, and then in class we had interactive and interesting discussions about what we had read.
What has been the most rewarding part of the programme?
The most rewarding part of the programme has been the weekly external speakers talks. Industry professionals come to Imperial to present what their company is doing and share insights about climate change. In addition, we get exposure to a big number of events, challenges and competitions focused on sustainability and green finance. The Business School also supports students to participate in student challenges by helping them with expenses and planning.
What has been the most challenging part of the programme?
In my opinion, the most challenging part of the programme is planning all the coursework, exams, society events, participation in challenges and personal life. There are a lot of things going on at the same time and organising everything can be challenging, especially in exam period.
How would you describe your cohort at Imperial?
The mix of backgrounds and interests is incredible. People are very open-minded and everyone is willing to help. Also, given the different areas of expertise, everyone has something to learn and to teach, which helps to quickly build great relationships.
Did you have a favourite professor/lecturer and why?
If I had to choose, I would pick Jeremy Fernando. He made the accounting lessons funny, interesting, interactive and practical. He encourages students to trust in themselves and he teaches in a fast, but at the same time, non-pressured way.
What has been the greatest opportunity you have had at Imperial?
The greatest opportunity I have had at Imperial has been participating in different sustainability challenges and work on personal or other colleagues’ ideas. Being on this programme has allowed me to meet incredible, innovative people that want to make a positive impact in the world and have professional experience in some areas that I hadn’t studied before.
Which workshops, events or guest lectures at the school have been useful in developing your skills and knowledge?
The weekly external speakers have been very useful for bringing new insights and questions on topics that I thought I completely understood. They have helped me to build stronger opinions and learn about new and interesting areas of sustainability. In addition, the fact that some external speakers talk about specific areas in which I had no experience has led me to study and learn more in these certain topics.
What clubs, societies or other activities have you been involved in at Imperial? Do you hold a student leadership position?
I have been involved in the Futsal Team and in the Triathlon Team. In addition, I also hold a Student Ambassador position. Finally, I have represented the Social Impact Club in the IESE Impact Investment Competition.
Have you had opportunities to work/socialise with students across programmes within the Business School?
Absolutely! There are events specifically designed for networking with other programmes. Moreover, there are always interesting talks and workshops in the evening where it is possible to meet students from different Master’s within the Business School, but also within the whole College.
How have you benefited from the Business School’s connection to the Imperial College London community, and the programmes connection to the Grantham Institute?
In order to give insights into some of the ideas I was working on, I have been connected with researchers from the faculty of Engineering and also with researchers from the Grantham Institute. They have provided valuable feedback and helped in building a stronger proposal for the different Sustainable Investment Competitions I am participating in.
What are your future career goals and how have they been realised since being at Imperial?
I would like to work in providing sustainable technology solutions for developing countries, and I would also enjoy working for climate change adaptation/mitigation projects within these countries. The UN has a broad expertise in this area, and it is currently one of my main career goals. On the other hand, I am very interested in renewable energies and I really enjoy the consulting world, so I am also looking for opportunities within this sector. Finally, being able to implement the ideas I am currently working on would be a dream come true.
Imperial has helped me discover more about myself and in what I really want to work on. Touching on different topics and talking with many different people from different areas of sustainability has been very helpful for understanding the type of job they do and if I would like to do it.
Have you received any job offers since commencing your programme?
I am currently in various hiring processes for summer interviews (in renewable energy companies and the public sector). In addition, I am looking to work on the ideas my team and I are proposing to the Sustainable Investment Challenges we are participating in.
How did the services from Careers help you in your professional development?
Imperial College Business School Careers has been helpful for practising interviews, building a strong CV and improving my networking skills. In addition, they have provided me with valuable feedback on my LinkedIn profile and how to structure job applications.
Careers also provides me with a broad range of resources to build stronger communication, writing and analytical skills, as well as case studies and other materials useful for real interviews.
Do you think studying in a central location such as London is beneficial for networking and career opportunities?
Absolutely! Being at the heart of the city allows you to assist in daily events, attend talks in company’s offices, have meetings with potential employers and more. In addition, being in this part of the city gives you the opportunity to go running to Hyde Park, visit museums and enjoy good food restaurants.
Where do you live in London and why did you choose to live there?
I live in West Kensington. I chose this area because it is close enough to walk to class every day, it provides me with all amenities I need (supermarket, public transport, plenty of restaurants to enjoy a good meal for a fair price) and it is located next to Holland Park, where I enjoy going for a run and walking in sunny days.
When you’re not studying, what do you enjoy doing?
I really like sports. I am a member of the Futsal Team. We train two times per week and we play matches on the weekend. I also enjoy climbing and running. When I have enough free time, I try to go to big parks such as Richmond and Hampstead Heath or visit museums and food markets.
What have been the benefits and challenges of moving to London? What advice would you give to someone in a similar position?
Moving to London has plenty of benefits. Everything happens here, there are plenty of food markets, museums to visit, parks to enjoy, interesting people to meet and companies where you could work. However, finding a place to stay in the long term can be demanding, especially if you are not located in the country. My main advice would be to come to the city for three to four days and have some flat viewings organised to sign the contract and secure the place before starting the programme. However, if this option is not viable, I would recommend not to stress about finding accommodation. There are some students that won’t have secured a place in the first two weeks and that stay in hostels, Airbnb’s or with friends while trying to find a place to stay in the long term.
Looking back to when you were applying for the programme, did you attend any online webinars or on-campus information sessions?
I did not attend to any webinars and I was not able to attend to on-campus information sessions since I was studying and working in Barcelona. However, I talked to three alumni through Unibuddy and LinkedIn who answered some doubts I had regarding the programme and also in terms of accommodation, societies, etc. I would recommend prospective students to attend webinars and information sessions. They help you know more about the programme, meet prospective students that are in similar situations, explore the Business School and the whole campus. In addition, at these events it is possible to ask questions to the Programme director, alumni and to the Admissions team.
What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying for the programme?
The first thing I would recommend is to know why you want to study this Master’s. What do you expect to learn? Why is it useful for your future career goals? What experiences do you hope to have at Imperial? Why specifically a Master’s that combines the science of climate change with business?
The second piece of advice I would give is to be completely open-minded and willing to change about opinions or interests. The programme provides you with plenty of different inputs that can make you realise you are much more interested in a topic than you previously thought (which may lead to a change in your main career goals or the kind of job you would like to do). In my opinion, this is very positive because it helps you learn about yourself and to pursue a career that you will really enjoy.