Bachelor of Science in Engineering – Department of Mechanical Engineering, UConn
Story by Shruthi Nagaraj – Communications/Administrative Coordinator, UConn SNE IAC
Julia chose to study Mechanical Engineering as it is a good combination of her interest to understand the way things work, her aptitude for math and physics and her desire to work in a field that brings solutions to real world problems. UConn’s quality of education at an affordable cost and the numerous connections to industry and research made it her best choice to pursue her undergraduate studies. During the program, she enjoyed learning about the various applications of physics in our everyday lives and the infrastructure and technology we build around us. She has become interested through her experiential learning activities at UConn, undergraduate research, and internships to help manufacturing industries reduce their energy consumption, maintain their competitiveness, and become more sustainable. During her senior year, Julia chose to work at UConn’s Southern New England Industrial Assessment Center (SNE IAC) since her professional goal was well aligned with the mission of the Department of Energy funded Center. It was important for her that her career helps address climate change in some manner and by helping the industry reduce energy consumption, the carbon emissions can be massively reduced. She knew that working at SNE IAC would help her gain exposure to the common energy system problems found in the manufacturing industry. When asked about her undergraduate program, she said, “My undergraduate degree has provided me with a solid theoretical foundation in thermodynamics, heat transfer, and fluid dynamics. These courses are pertinent to my field when dealing with steam, power generation, compressed air, and other energy systems.” The knowledge that Julia gained from her undergraduate courses like Thermodynamics, which taught about refrigeration cycles and power cycles, are common to the equipment seen in the field like chillers, boilers, and turbines. She says that working at IAC has helped build a broad base of knowledge of the energy systems in a manufacturing facility and get familiarized with the terminology and equipment that she currently uses in her job. It has even helped her see the way that energy flows through a system and the energy losses in the process. Learning the systems approach has helped her greatly in evaluating any energy system to ensure energy savings. She hopes to implement some of the processes used for assessments in IAC and the analysis and measurement tools such as the MEASUR in her present job. These tools provide modules for several systems and are helpful in industry to calculate savings. She anticipates that her association with the IAC will help her stay connected to Department of Energy programs that help make manufacturing more competitive and sustainable and meet others with similar goals along the way.
UConn IAC would like to wish Julia the best in all her future endeavors and a great success in her professional career.