Abhinav Agrawal is interested in sustainability, forecasting data analytics, economics, distributed energy resources, financial analysis, and energy modeling. He has two years of experience in leading successful internships at PG&E and Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and carried out independent research on ‘electrification using DERs’. The core courses of his graduate program that has prepared him professionally include power systems, energy analysis, and a capstone project on integrated resource planning (IRP). He has completed a solar+storage+load analysis for a California Energy Commission (CEC) report, took the lead in initiating talks with VMware about potential corporate sustainability projects, and connected a remote village in the Himalayas with electricity.
Mary Biswal is a climate and energy enthusiast who would like to make an impact in the current energy transition to a low-carbon economy. Moving from a career path as a geologist, Mary joined the ESM program with a passion to learn more about the renewable energy industry. Through her learnings in the program so far, she has found new opportunities with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). She currently works with energy efficiency and data analyses from decarbonization of existing fossil-based infrastructure.
Drawn to one of the global epicenters of renewable energy, Cole Blaney moved to the Bay Area seeking to become a leader in renewable energy innovations. Focusing on renewable energy policy and finance, his background in Geology and Economics from Colorado State University (’16) has brought unique perspectives to state, national, and global issues explicitly investigated within the Energy Systems Management program at USF.
Irene Boghdadi is on a mission to accelerate the deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions in emerging markets. Prior to pursuing USF’s Masters in Energy Systems Management, she held senior positions at Engineering and Management Consulting firm Chemonics Egypt and non-profit Cleantech Arabia, two Egypt-based entities pioneering private sector-driven RE and EE development in the Middle East & North Africa. Irene graduated from the American University in Dubai with a BFA in Visual Communications (’09).
Brandon Britt is an Area Project Manager for Amazon Web Services (AWS) and has been working in critical power environments since joining the Navy as a Nuclear Electrician in 2011. He received his Bachelor’s Degree while serving on active duty, remotely from Excelsior College, in Nuclear Engineering Technology. Brandon is eager to use his energy management skills to join AWS’s journey toward carbon neutrality. He resides in Oakland, CA.
Alejandro Castelan is currently working as Regional Manager for Rising Sun, a non-profit organization working at the intersection of Climate Change and economic sustainability. He is responsible for implementing our youth workforce development and energy efficiency programs in Contra Costa, Solano and Napa counties in partnership with local government entities, BAYREN, and PGE. He is passionate about not only making sure that the energy transition happens soon, but also that it includes everyone, especially historically marginalized communities. He joined the ESM program to gain knowledge on the technical, scientific, and quantitative side of energy. His current interests and areas of research include market penetration of home energy monitoring platforms, energy data disaggregation, impact of rate setting on energy consumption, and the effects of the energy transition on labor. He did his undergraduate studies at UC Berkeley where he majored in Political Science.
With no formal background in the energy space, Randy Chiu was drawn to the ESM program’s interdisciplinary approach to training professionals to lead the energy transition. Joining the program has enabled Randy to develop a framework with which to think all things energy, from technology to economics to policy. Randy is currently a program manager working on demand response program operations. Most recently, he’s worked on initiatives to integrate demand response resources into the wholesale electricity market.
Building on his background in off-grid energy and rural electrification, Marc Gaulier joined the ESM program to become a leader in the transition to a renewable, distributed future. Marc is currently a Distributed Energy Resource Analyst with Olivine Inc., and previously worked as a mechanical engineer developing microgrids at ZeroBase Energy and Indigo Energy. Marc holds a BE in Mechanical Engineering from McGill University.
Khalil Ahkir Johnson is a critical thinker and innovative problem solver from Philadelphia with a passion for the intersections of environmental justice and renewable energy policy. His career goal is to bring energy equity to Disadvantaged Communities whom are often the last to transition to cleaner and more affordable energy options.
Sotiris Kyprianou’s dedication to improve and transition the energy sector in his home country, Cyprus, brought him to San Francisco to join the ESM program. With his power engineering background and the skills he acquired from the program, Sotiris found an opportunity to work at Tesla Energy, one of the global leaders in energy transition and the energy storage space. He currently works in product management and some of his best skills include energy analysis, energy optimization models and utility rate analysis.
Jessica Penrod is a low-head hydro developer at Natel Energy, based in Alameda, CA. She is a passionate bike commuter and believes it is important to promote that small actions make a difference in reducing our carbon footprint.
Rene Podho considers grid decarbonization in the power sector as the most effective way to achieve global environmental sustainability. This would essentially be done through the implementation of smart grid technologies and sound energy policies. With a background in Electrical Engineering from Kenya, she has familiarized herself with the design and installation of electrical systems in the building services and electric utility industries. Her internship with the California Public Utilities Commission has exposed her to the energy regulatory industry, where she is gaining invaluable insight into California’s energy resource planning processes.
As a proud veteran and having worked in the energy sector for the last 20 years, Jeremy Seckinger sees the energy landscape is undergoing significant and needed changes. His journey has entailed various aspects from teaching military students how a gas turbine works to running combined cycle power plants and watching solar impact the market. With his interest in learning more about the energy evolution, he discovered the ESM program at USF which provided him the knowledge needed to be on the forefront of this industry shift. In his first year, this program challenged him and gave him the tools needed to support the upcoming decarbonization of the electric grid and the electrification of transportation systems…exciting times!
Gabriela Volpato graduated with a BS in Energy Engineering in Brazil and was looking for a way to have a broader perspective in the energy field. The imminent transition to a cleaner path in the energy sector always intrigued her and she was happy to find Energy Systems Management (ESM) which allowed her to work with people who have the same goals for a clean energy future. In her first year at ESM, she developed a critical view about the energy industry in California which helped her land an internship at Tesla. She is working in the Environmental, Health and Safety department, performing energy audits, waste management and safety within its factory. Being an ESM grad student gave her the tools to find work at an innovative company that is paving the way for clean transportation.