Chidubem Nwagbara (Glory)
Nigerian graduate student, Glory Nwagbara, has been studying the Master of Energy Change program at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra. “It was the Energy Change Masters course that attracted me to ANU. This course is quite unique,” explains Glory.
Glory was also the recipient of a prestigious and highly competitive AUSAID scholarship. “We had about 5000 applications from my country and there were just 30 of us selected for a Masters in Australia,” she says. The scholarship pays the University fees and also a fortnightly stipend to pay for accommodation and living expenses for the duration of the course.
The Master of Energy Change program is one and a half years in duration. One year of coursework and six months research after which the student can choose to specialise in a particular field. “You get to choose any subjects that have to do with energy change - policy, efficiency, new technologies etc. For this semester I am doing two engineering courses, one policy course in the Crawford School, one environmental law course – so you have a little bit of everything,” she says.
Glory is enthusiastic about how the course will help with employment opportunities when she returns to Africa because climate change and energy change is a new area of specialty. “Pollution is in the air and the environment is sick, so my studies here will be very applicable back home. We were planning on getting an Energy Research Centre and I realised that there were very few people specialising in that area, so there are real opportunities there.”
One of Glory's favourite experiences has been living on campus and enjoying the many activities offered by her hall of residence. “I really like the way it is so multicultural,” she says. “I meet a lot of people from different countries. ANU is very interesting and Canberra is a calm place so it's good for learning. The people are friendly and outgoing, it's like home.”
When asked if she would recommend the course to other people Glory said she would because it was so important to the issue of climate change – “The solution to the whole climate change problem is the energy aspect of it, so it is important to have people working towards that direction.”