In August 2023, the second round of the Women in Green Hydrogen Mentoring Program has successfully concluded. For one year, 31 mentors supported 42 mentees in their professional and personal development in and around the green hydrogen world.

“It was very nice to meet my mentor Cristina and have her guidance to enter a very competitive world. I really appreciate being able to connect with other women in engineering, it is very valuable and positive to continue expanding the arrival of women in the sector.”

Natalia Paz Arancibia, Ingeniera Civil Mecánica UTFSM, Mentee

Last year in August at the kick-off workshop, the 70 program participants discussed the roles of the mentors and mentees, received the mentoring toolkit with guidance for the coming year, and got to know each other in breakout sessions for networking.

To check in after the first half of the programme, the mentors and mentees met again at the midterm networking event in February 2023. Jasna Jankovic, Assistant Professor at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at University of Connecticut shared her experiences as a mentor. Participants could give feedback to the mentoring team, Ann-Kathrin Lipponer, Associate Programme Officer at IRENA and Anna Seefried, Senior Associate at PWC, and again had the chance to connect during networking sessions.

“My mentee Lara and I met every 6 to 8 weeks, and I think we both could learn from each other. For me, it was the first time that I participated in a mentoring program and I enjoyed it very much. I think I could give some good advice to her to start new challenges.”

Christina Messner, Senior Director QM & Technical Compliance at GKN Hydrogen, Mentor

Towards the end of the one year, in May 2023 the participants came together online for a final round of exchange. In August, the mentors and mentees received their certificates, marking the end of the programme.

“I’m really grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it and also, much appreciation to my mentor Alison. Not only did I grow personally but also professionally. I learned that I could achieve whatever I set my mind to and because of what I learned, I would love to be a mentor to impact the teachings and learning I was opportuned to gain.”

Michal Ezeh, Student majoring in petroleum and gas engineering at the University of Lagos, Mentee

Thank you to every mentor and mentee for your energy and enthusiasm in joining the programme.

Experience shared by mentee Icoana Laís L M Martins

“The program was fundamental for my professional development, as my mentor Seda was able to demonstrate the importance of hydrogen for decarbonization, as well as contributed to the emergence of the startup I founded in the area of hydrogen training. From the program I started to participate in events in the area in Brazil, to understand how this technology will be developed in the country and its impact on society. The mentor was super solicited. We had weekly meetings of one hour, time that we agreed from the moment we met, I say that it seemed that we already knew each other, by the connection we had, and these meetings were fundamental for my development and understanding of the area. I say that I entered one person, and another came out, because there is no place in the world where it is taught what I learned.”

Icoana Laís L M Martins, Consultant in the area of energy efficiency and hydrogen, Mentee

Experience shared by mentee Michelle Mattenet

“Last week Catherine and I completed our mentorship program. Since the beginning of it last year, we had seven meetings where we could talk about all the topics that were part of the objectives that I wanted to achieve. Thanks to her and to your help, I could empower myself and found a beautiful network where I could find myself understood. One of the daily and most difficult things that I have to deal with in my job life: to be alone and surrounded by men who do not feel or think the same way as I am. Talking to Catherine regularly helped me understand in a better way my situation and gave me tools to deal with it. As a result of this program, now I’m happily moving to Milan to pursue a Master in Energy Engineering with an Erasmus scholarship. Leaving behind a job that did not make me happy with people who do not know how to work in an equal and diverse environment. And last but not least, I am realizing one of my biggest dreams in life, which was studying Green Energies abroad. This could not have happened without your help and without this program. I am extremely happy and grateful for this opportunity you gave me.”

Michelle Mattenet, Rotary Mechanical Equipment Design Engineer at Techint Engineering & Construction, Mentee