Universities today are equipping students with the skills needed to address the world’s most pressing problems.
Sustainability is a big focus due to climate change issues, a lack of clean drinking water and growing global awareness of the state of our environment.
More than ever, the world needs people who can come up with sustainable, innovative solutions to environmental issues.
Postgraduate degrees have been designed with this in mind, building on the foundations learnt in your undergraduate course to specialise in niche areas of sustainability, such as renewable energy and water treatment solutions.
At Murdoch University, Master’s programmes such as the Master of Renewable and Sustainable Energy and Master of Water Treatment and Desalination do all this – and more.
Innovative programmes offering industry-relevant education
The Master of Renewable and Sustainable Energy offers you advanced training in the area of renewable and sustainable energy systems, sustainable energy policy and development, energy efficiency and carbon management.
At Murdoch University, energy research and teaching goes back as far as 1975. In fact, this is the most comprehensive programme in renewable energy in Australia.
Not only will you become an expert in the field, you can also develop the advanced interdisciplinary skills required to design, optimise and evaluate the technical, social and economic viability of renewable energy schemes.
During the programme, you will gain practical experience while learning from experts from the Murdoch University Energy Research and Innovation Group (MUERI).
Plus, you’ll receive the very latest education in the field as the course has been developed in conjunction with the energy and carbon industry, with units added to the programme in response to new industry demands and developments.
Along with that, you learn in an environment where you’ll have access to state-of-the-art facilities such as the renewable energy outdoor test area for research and development on solar photovoltaic technology, solar thermal power, wind turbines, hybrid systems and micro-grid technology.
Students can also use the engineering and energy laboratory with battery room, environmental chamber, PV array simulator, power converter testing room, diesel generator room and electric vehicle charging station.
There’s also the opportunity to undertake a dissertation in an area you’re passionate about so you can start making a difference as soon as possible.
The Master of Engineering in Water Treatment and Desalination is another innovative programme that builds on a student’s existing engineering knowledge.
This course will allow you to deepen your knowledge and experience as you learn how to design, operate and monitor municipal, industrial and even small-scale water treatment processes.
Preparing students for professional careers in the water industry, graduates become qualified to design, engineer, operate and troubleshoot broad spectrum and specialised water treatment processes, not only for conventional potable water and wastewater quality applications, but also for more targeted industrial, agricultural and resource recovery needs.
You’ll also develop a strong foundation in the fundamentals of water engineering, learning how to apply theory to practice through the professional practice elements of the course.
Graduate students become well-versed in the use of tools, algorithms, hardware and software and state-of-the-art approaches for water purification.
Making a meaningful impact on communities and societies
Several graduates of these programmes have gone on to breakthroughs in their respective fields, while others have brought valuable knowledge and projects back home for underserved communities.
Graduate student Ivonne Tshuma from Zimbabwe will graduate with a PhD from Murdoch University at the end of this year, after adjusting to a new culture.
She has developed a commercially applicable version of the self-desalination technique and is now settled in Perth, working on a project she hopes will help address drinking water issues in communities across the globe.
She said, “My target is not big plans because everyone has to start small then grow. So, my target is to have something that can help a small family then later on, upgrade to a larger scale.
“The purpose of research is to positively impact the community. This kind of work is something that we just can’t keep to ourselves; we need to explore and see how beneficial it might be. Because of climate change, we can’t just rely on rainfall, we need to find other ways of generating water.
“These days there is a big push to go greener and my process also reduces carbon emissions. When you use electricity, some of it comes from coal, but I’m just using water.”
Avishek Malla is another impressive graduate who is delivering solar energy to the most remote parts of Nepal.
In 2008, he was awarded an Australia Award Endeavor Scholarship to study a Master in Renewable and Sustainable Energy at Murdoch.
After graduation, he returned home to Nepal to set up an international social enterprise which provides affordable solar technology to people in cities, as well as remote locations.
He said, “Solar applications had been widely used to power remote Australian communities which was new learning for me as Nepal at the time was only using small solar units. I was privileged to gain this knowledge from professors and lecturers who had many years of experience in the field.
“It was a great opportunity to get exposure to international education and learn about things that we are not aware of, and to find out about things that we can adopt in our country to create ample benefits.
“The most important lesson my professors taught me at Murdoch was a holistic approach towards implementing any project. We need to understand and integrate four pillars – technical, social, environmental, and political and economic aspects. This has been my main mantra and approach to any work or project I am involved in.”
Want to make a real difference either globally or within your community? Further your career with a postgraduate education from Murdoch University.