GRADUATING DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

As the COVID pandemic started to take hold, I was a new graduate from an International Business program looking to have positive impact on the world. Having a deep belief in the environmental and social benefits of building a green economy, I was in search of relevant career opportunities. With my focus on the cleantech and renewable energy sectors, I came across Solar Ship Inc., an emissions-free aviation company whose vision and initiative stood out to me. With the decarbonization of industries worldwide being identified as a common goal for my generation, being able to actively participate in facilitating the transition was an opportunity that I did not want to miss.

After several conversations with Jay Godsall, Founder and CEO of Solar Ship Inc., I was welcomed to the team and put to work in an inspiring fashion. My first project was the MAKT electric propulsion system joint venture with Zenair, in which I have been incorporated top-to-bottom throughout the decision-making process. The tasks given to me have ranged from shortlisting my favourite names for the brand to comprising a competitor landscape profiling to international market research and analysis.

During my internship, I had the opportunity to visit the company hangar to see a demonstration of the MAKT electric propulsion system. The experience of seeing the capabilities of the system up close and in person was exhilarating. Not only did it exceed my expectations, but it also further installed my belief in an electric aviation future.

Another amazing experience during my internship included a video conference call with the executive team of Solar Ship Inc. and a prospective business partner located in the south-central African country of Malawi. Coming from an academic background of geography and international business, I thoroughly enjoyed participating in a meeting of such global magnitude. Having your questions, concerns, and ideas for the business being heard and reflected on by executives across multiple countries was quite the confidence builder.

The work that I have been putting together throughout the internship has helped to identify and quantify various international market conditions with a big focus on Sub-Saharan Africa. Looking into everything from determining the best industry applications, demographics, geographic, and economic regions to focus on for entry, to researching governmental publications and press releases regarding new initiatives to support electrifying transportation, the work has brought me to the zenith of the rising electric propulsion system industry.

Working towards a common good, with an intelligent group of people, has been an adventurous experience in which I would recommend to any prospective students or working professionals in search of starting a career in the cutting-edge cleantech and electric transportation industry.