Blog #002: Calling All Energy Nerds

Libby Delucia | March 12th, 2018

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The MIT Energy Club was a key launch point to my career after graduating from MIT Sloan School of Management. Being Co-President with Ben Magolan, PhD candidate, Nuclear, and a Sponsorship Director the year before was most important thing I did at school. I learned first hand about sales, strategic planning, the importance of operations, “hiring” and “firing” (yes, even in a club!), building a Board, leveraging industry connections, and building new ones. One of my favorite things was that I got to meet students from across campus - PhDs, undergrads, TPP masters students, and everyone within 3 years at Sloan who had anything to do with energy. I felt so lucky to realize the full power of MIT through the club. I knew I had truly spanned campus when I had a meeting with a PhD, undergrad, and Corporation Trustee, and they cracked a joke about superconductors and copper as an insulator that they all found hilarious.

 

Through the club, I met many companies, including National Grid. It was a message from the “All Energy Nerds” WhatsApp group that ended up getting me a job I love.

 

At National Grid, I’m in a new Leadership Development Program designed for post-MBAs. In the program, my cohort and I rotate through four positions over two years and get to know the company in an accelerated way both through the different departments we work in and the insights we share with each other.

 

I wanted to work at a utility because they are central to so much change going on in the industry today. I put aside my original idea to work at an energy storage company when I saw that half the MBA-appropriate opportunities were about figuring out the utility business model for storage. I thought - why don’t I just go work at a utility where I can have a direct impact on the business model? This also gives me the upside of working on any cutting edge business models that impact utilities.

 

My first rotation has been just what I had hoped for. With the Customer Solutions team, I’ve worked on bringing a new financing partner for energy efficiency to our customers. In six months, I learned about the market, developed a strategy, and ran a procurement process to find a partner. I’m proud to say we are in the final approval processes of the company my team and I recommended. I’m very excited for my next rotation as well, which will also draw on my finance experience and will force me to think critically about the vision for utilities in this changing landscape.

 

The Energy Club was a foundational experience for me, and it has immediately made me a more valuable employee and a more impactful change agent in an industry I’ve been passionate about for a decade.