Archive for April 29, 2009

Know Thy Thesis

This is the first of our guest blogging series. If you have thoughts to share on seeking a green job, send a sample piece of 500 words or less to speakout[at]

Penned by Thomas Ramsson

Having recently graduated with a ‘green’ MSc earlier this year, I had to watch 40% of my office be made redundant in March. I had looked forward to a full-time position with the multi-disciplinary consultancy I worked for during my studies, but instead I was told that the company couldn’t take me on full-time, and they could only extend my existing, part-time contract for one more month.

Instead of being grief stricken, I took comfort in that I had been networking for months, had established strong contacts, and had already been interviewing elsewhere. You see, I had a great boss who forewarned me to get job-hunting a few months earlier.

But it wasn’t just having a nice boss tipping me off that got me job seeking. In hindsight, I did a few things revolving around my thesis that secured me work in green business. So here are my tips to you:

At University:

1. Choose a relevant thesis topic; speak to professionals in industry for suggestions.

2. Use the skills employers are looking for in the research (I used whole life cost analysis, cost/benefit analysis, and carbon footprinting).

3. Ask a few companies if you can partner with them for advice in exchange for permission to link your research to their projects (subject to IP restrictions).

At the Interview:

4. Be ready to discuss your thesis topic extensively during interviews (I interviewed for my current job just a week after my viva).

5. Be ready to discuss your motivation for your thesis topic and for a career in the green sector. Better answers than “Prevent global warming” are required.

Instead of being a distraction during your job search, preparing your thesis should be your job search.

April 29, 2009 at 4:36 pm Leave a comment

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