What to major in as a undergrad to get into renewable energy?

I was considering doing biochem and computer science

The major forms of renewable energy right now are wind and solar. Most of the people that I know that work in renewable energy majored in either electrical or mechanical engineering.

Agree with the suggestion to look at EE or Mech E. And batteries are the next big thing in renewables so consider materials science or engineering. Economics is always a good option for the business side of things.

You don’t have to be an engineer to work in the renewble energy field. You can enter it from the business side as well. My husband isn’t an engineer and has been in the renewable energy field (financing/develoment) since the late 80s.

1 Like

As with all industries, people are needed with a variety of skills. They need lawyers, accountants, HR, etc.

I took a series of classes in Emerging Energy Technologies a few years ago, and the guy teaching it had Ph.D. in Materials Science. But the field was very interdisciplinary. We were reading papers from Chemical Engineers, Electrical Engineers, Physicists, Geophysicists, Nuclear Engineers, Hydrologists, Agricultural Scientists, and I’m sure I’m forgetting a bunch.

1 Like

It really depends on what school you go to and how their majors are designed. For example, UCLA offers a Climate Science major which might be of interest. https://www.sustain.ucla.edu/our-initiatives/education-and-research/academic-programs/

UCSD recently changed their Enviromental Engineering degree to have a different focus http://maeweb.ucsd.edu/undergrad/programs/environmental

CU Boulder is another school to look at. https://www.colorado.edu/rasei/education/renewable-and-sustainable-energy-education-cu-boulder

Some schools also have environmental engineering, where you can get certificates or minor in renewable energy (Duke is one of these schools).

Some 2 year community colleges offer programs in wind & other forms of renewable energy.