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European Master in Renewable Energy attracts record number of students

Education in renewable energy is an attractive career option: more and more young engineers seek a specialisation in renewable energy to get fit for employment in the growing renewable energy sector.

The European Master in Renewable Energy is a technical course directed towards engineers that want to specialise in one of the renewable energy technologies, such as wind energy, biomass energy, photovoltaics, solar building technology or hybrid systems. In 2007 it received record number of students wishing to further their careers in renewable energy. Students began their studies at the four core universities throughout Europe after extremely tough competition, contending with almost double the competition of previous years. For academic year 2007-08 the European Master of Renewable Energy was pleased to welcome 30% more students compared to previous years. The increase comes as no surprise to the master’s coordinator, EUREC Agency, since renewable energy has been predicted the fastest growing sector in the energy market for the next 20years. The major market drivers come from several aspects. Governmental policy and social awareness have been influenced by climate change and economical damage; mitigating climatae change and energy security are key political concerns favouring the use of green energy. As a result the development of renewable energy technologies is blossoming in the market. Companies such as General Electric, Siemens, Sharp, and Royal Dutch Shell are investing in renewable energy, setting the standards for smaller companies. Renewable energy is now competing with conventional fuels in four major markets; power generation, hot water and space heating, transportation fuels, and rural (off-grid) energy supplies. Altogether renewable energy industries provide 1.7 million jobs, most of them skilled and well paying. It is no surprise that the number of students in this sectors are reaching all time highs, as not only is there market potential but renewable energy also compliments the ‘ethical career’ choice of future generations. Stuart Parkinson, the director of “Scientists for Global Responsibility”, believes that RE technologies pave the way for ethical career choices. "For years the military and defence industries were a major employer of young science graduates, but the recent growth of the environmental consultancy, renewable energy and clean technology industries shows that there is now an ethical alternative”. In the European Master of Renewable Energy students follow a 16-month programme in at least two different locations throughout Europe. The course is divided into three semesters. Students attend a core university in September, which provides them with an overview of RE technologies. By February the students progress to a second university for the specialisation semester; here, the student’s knowledge is consolidated in their chosen technology. The remaining 6 months are spent on the premises of a company or research centre where the student carries out a practical or research project. The final commitment to the course unites students in Brussels; the home of the Renewable Energy Master, in order to present their thesis to fellow students and Professors. Many students specifically choose the European Master of Renewable Energy for the diverse and challenging career opportunities presented to them afterwards. When finishing the master’s many of our students find they are so well positioned to enter the market that they are able to secure employment even before submitting their final thesis. The theory of growing industrial demand for engineers of renewable energy is very visual at the European Master of Renewable Energy. Here, we look forward to giving our graduates the best chances of success for their careers ahead.

Countries

Belgium, Germany, Greece, Spain, France