Shortlist announced for competition showcasing young professionals in Scotland’s green energy sector

2017 award winners.

Almost 40 finalists of the 2018 Young Professionals Green Energy Awards were announced on 9 April.

More than 80 entrants, who’ve worked in Scotland’s renewable energy industry for five years or less, were narrowed down to a 36-strong shortlist.

– Former serviceman John Freeburn retrained as a wind turbine technician and currently works for installation contractors Windhoist in Ayrshire.
– James Williamson, Graduate Trainee Mechanical Engineer at SSE, refurbished a 5ft valve at Quoich Dam in the Highlands, and in doing so saved the company over £250,000 on replacement costs.
– Whizzkid Gavin Kitching, a 17-year-old analyst for ScottishPower Energy Networks, manages “vast quantities of data” on the company’s UK smart meter roll-out.
– Merlinda Andoni, a PhD student at Heriot-Watt University, is an expert in blockchain and has delivered tutorials to the Scottish Government, which is potentially exploring a community energy exchange demonstrator using the IT technology.
– Miles Franklin, Lead Engineer at Gravitricity, designed the innovative energy storage system, which was awarded £650,000 by Innovate UK in February.

The above finalists are just a few of the rising stars in renewables who’ve been shortlisted in 10 different categories. The full list of finalists is available here.

The event, which will welcome around 250 guests to Glasgow Science Centre on Thursday 24 May, was launched in 2015 to showcase the enormous range of fresh talent in the sector.

Jenny Hogan, Deputy Chief Executive of Scottish Renewables, said: “I’m absolutely blown away by the level of talent shown in the nominations submitted.

“The sheer quality and quantity of nominations has proven once again that our sector is leading in skill and innovation.

“Those shortlisted should be extremely proud of their achievements to date, and we hope that being a finalist in this competition will encourage them to go on to even bigger and better things in their future careers.”

The full list of categories this year is:

Academic Award, sponsored by Energy Technology Partnership
Achiever Award, sponsored by Hurley Palmer Flatt
Apprentice Award, sponsored by the Centre for Work-based Learning in Scotland
Business Development Award
Communicator Award
Engineer Award, sponsored by ESB
Innovator Award, sponsored by Highlands and Islands Enterprise
Professional Award, sponsored by WSP
Project Manager Award
Judges Award, sponsored by ScottishPower Renewables

The 2018 Young Professionals Green Energy Awards are headline-sponsored by ScottishPower Renewables.

Lindsay McQuade, CEO of ScottishPower Renewables, said: “The standard of young talent coming into the renewables industry is extremely high, as showcased by the standard of the nominees across all categories for these prestigious awards.

“If we can continue to attract such a wealth of talent then I believe the future of the renewables sector will be in very capable hands.”

WSP, an engineering professional services firm, is sponsoring the Professional Award category but is also offering an opportunity for the award winners to be integrated into its in-house Professional Growth Network.

Winners of the Young Professional Green Energy Awards will also be put forward for the Young and Inspiring Award at the Scottish Green Energy Awards this December.