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Young Professionals Green Energy Awards shortlist announced

Posted on 09/04/2018 by Laura Russell


Almost 40 finalists of the 2018 Young Professionals Green Energy Awards are announced today (April 9).
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 <available to sponsor>
  • Communicator Award <available to sponsor>
  • Engineer Award, sponsored by ESB
  • Innovator Award, sponsored by Highlands and Islands Enterprise
  • Professional Award, sponsored by WSP
  • Project Manager Award <available to sponsor>
  • 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, one of the world's leading engineering professional services firms, is sponsoring the Professional Award category but is also offering a unique 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.
The awards event will be hosted by David Farrell, the host of STV2’s ‘Live at Five’ programme and Heart Scotland’s Saturday breakfast show.

Laura Russell

Communications Officer