We’re introducing each individual joining us for a month-long mentorship as part of this year’s TechWomen, a program empowering the next generation of women leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics from Africa and the Middle East. Say hello to Petra!
Current Occupation: Renewable Energy Coordinator for an EU funded project named SISSAF
Mentorship Program: working with SolarCity’s commercial engineering team
Tell us a bit about your current line of work back home, and why you decided to apply to TechWomen.
SISSAF (Support Programme for Infrastructure Sector Strategies and Alternative Financing) represents an effort to tackle critical aspects of the situation in Lebanon directly linked to the economic and social stability of the area. A well-functioning infrastructure in sectors like energy, transport and water is a basic pre-condition for sustainable growth. My role is to provide technical assistance in the coordination between the Lebanese Centre for Energy Conservation, Ministry of Energy and Water and all stakeholders related to renewable energy and energy efficiency rules and policies.
I applied to Techwomen because it will give me the chance to meet experts in my fields, draw from their experience and see what is new and how my country could benefit. Entrepreneurial workshops will help me acquire the needed skills to run my own company one day.
Is this your first time in the United States? What is one thing you want to see or do while you’re here?
It is my second time in USA and California; in August 2012 I visited San Diego and LA. Because I am a basketball player, I really wanted to go and watch an NBA game. Yesterday I got the chance to watch Golden State Warriors vs. the LA Clippers in Oakland, and it was a great experience!
Why are you interested in working in green technology?
This work makes me part of the solution rather than part of the climate change and pollution problem. Going green simply makes our planet a sustainable place to live in and leave for our children.
What are you hoping to learn during your time at SolarCity?
I want to learn about the US solar market and how SolarCity is leading in this field.
Where do you see yourself, 5-10 years down the road?
I really hope to pursue a PhD in environmental sustainability and to run my own energy service consultancy company!
Tell us a fun fact about yourself?
I love to escape in the nature, especially in my village Tannourine in the north of Lebanon, which has a breathtaking fauna and flora.