My name is Valeria Estrada. I was born in 1996 in Medellin, Colombia. I am currently doing an MSc in Energy and Sustainable Development at De Montfort University.

Since I was little I had very clear that my purpose is to help, and I have always tried to engage in activities consistent with that purpose. 

When I was around 7 years old, my dad took me to a university to see the exhibition of student work from different engineering fields. I remember being impressed by how such young people could materialize solutions for different types of problems and how these solutions could help to generate better living conditions for people and other living beings. At that moment, it became my dream to become an Engineer.

Throughout my undergraduate studies, I worked on various projects highlighting my interest in sustainability. I was part of a KRATOS team that built an electro-solar vehicle for the European Solar Challenge. Additionally, I participated in the construction of a scaled prototype of an electro-solar boat as a cleaner alternative for the transport sector in Colombia and I was also involved in projects that sought the use of plastics from WEEE. These approaches to sustainability topics confirmed that this is the area I want to pursue, that it is the subject that I am passionate about, and the best way for me to fulfil my purpose of helping.

We are at a stage in the history of humanity where the environmental issue and what we as human beings can do about it in the coming years will be decisive. The way we live, produce, and consume is not sustainable. Seeking cleaner energy alternatives is needed, working on energy efficiency is essential, and generating less waste is urgent.

I am excited about the prospect of collaborating with a diverse group of students and professionals passionate about creating a sustainable future.