Rakesh received a scholarship to study at KTH
For Rakesh, it was an amazing feeling to receive the JOINT Programme Scholarship. It has allowed him to be financially self-reliant during his master's studies in Innovative Sustainable Energy Engineering.
What has the scholarship meant for you and your studies?
It was an amazing feeling to receive the scholarship. I am honoured, and it feels great to be appreciated and rewarded for one's work. The scholarship has allowed me to be financially self-reliant. Coming from a middle-class family in India, this has indeed been a big boost for me to pursue the next step of my career. I hope, one day in the future, I will be able to repay this to society.
What was your academic or professional background before you applied for the scholarships?
I did my bachelor's in mechanical engineering at SASTRA University and graduated with honours. I made the Dean's list during all four years of my studies. I interned at a couple of research institutes and had published a research article in a SCOPUS-indexed journal. Immediately after completing my bachelors, I applied to do my master's in the ISEE programme. I got accepted and received a 100% scholarship for my first year at Aalto University, Finland. At Aalto, I managed to make the Dean's list for maintaining a 4+ GPA and completing 60+ credits during the academic year 2019-20. I did my summer internship as a research assistant with the Energy Conversion and Storage research group at the university.
Do you have any recommendations for other students who want to apply for scholarships?
Study hard, work smart and maintain a decent work-life balance. GPA is an important criterion used to select scholarship recipients. So, all you can do is give your best and hope for the best to happen. But if you do not get it, it is not the end of the world. There are always other options, and you can easily earn back what you spent for grad school.
What are the best aspects of your programme and your school?
I love it. At KTH, I belong to the school of Industrial Engineering and Management. The professors and guest lecturers are world-class and very approachable. Most of our projects are very practical. They involve modelling the energy systems of different countries and studying how the policies play a role in their quest for a better future. To me, this has been as useful as interesting.
What would you say to a student applying for your programme?
If you are interested in a holistic overview of energy systems or specific renewable energy technologies, then this is your track. The programme is tailored to ensure students can continue in their field of interest. If you are interested in a specific topic, you can always get in touch with the professors. Further, this programme also has a winter school, which is an excellent opportunity to network with students and professors from other Nordic universities. At the same time, it is super fun.