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Silvia Ferro, Palermo, Italy

Alumna in Chemistry: Science for Energy and Sustainability

'After completing my Bachelor’s in Chemistry, I felt I needed to do something to contribute to the transition to renewable energy. Our planet needs it now more than ever.'

'In the Science for Energy and Sustainability track I really get to broaden my thinking about the world around us. I enjoyed all the courses I took, because they all contributed to building up the knowledge I am proud to have today. Whether it was a specific chemistry course such as Organic Photovoltaics or an interdisciplinary course such as Energy and Climate Change, they gave me the tools to understand the current issues in the field of sustainability and to formulate solutions to them.'

Freedom to choose

'What I really like about this joint degree programme with VU Amsterdam is that I had the freedom to choose the courses I found most interesting in the pursuit of my desired career. Right now, I am writing my thesis on solar energy. For this project, I am investigating the properties of materials with a great potential to facilitate the transition to renewables thanks to their low fabrication costs, high efficiency and low-to-no toxicity of their components. The research group I am working with has great experience in the field, I am confident that my work will be highly valued.'

'Besides a deep, solid expertise in my field, I also learnt skills such as working in teams, a fundamental requirement for any kind of job. And, last but not least, I learned to meet deadlines.'

Welcoming for ambitious students

'I chose the University of Amsterdam because of its openness. They welcome ambitious students and proactively support them in achieving their goals. It’s a great environment, full of ambitious, international people who are committed to developing their skills in the service of science and, by extension, of society.'

'And I love Amsterdam, from the moment I first set foot here. Its welcoming, dynamic atmosphere and the opportunity to satisfy every type of lifestyle really make it a unique city!'