Currently, the energy problems we are facing are a very important issue which includes not only environmental problems like global warming and fossil fuel exhaustion, but also political problems like the Kyoto Protocol and carbon emission rights, and economic problems like the growth of industries for the next generation. Among others, the electrical energy field, which lays the foundation for industry, is receiving much attention from the world. For this reason, ‘Smart Grid’ has been selected as a development strategy for the green energy industry. ‘Smart Grid’ is the next generation intelligent electrical grid, which optimizes energy efficiency by utilizing real-time information on power supplies and consumption through the use of information technology applied to the existing electrical grid. In simple terms, it can adjust the supply and consumption of electricity so it is not wasted or used unnecessarily, by understanding the current power usage and adapting to it. Apart from saving electricity, ‘Smart Grid’ has the advantage of reducing greenhouse gases, improving energy efficiency, and promoting growth. ‘Smart Grid’ will have a major role in the world of the future, and for this reason Sangmyung University established the department of Energy Grid in 2010, to keep up with the times.
‘Energy grid’ is a combination of ‘smart grid’ and ‘energy’. The department of Energy Grid at Sangmyung University is unique in Korea; it studies methods of producing energy and the control of energy in an economical way. The study of the new concept of smart grid is seen as an alternative solution to energy problems. At the national level, smart grid is being spotlighted as a new business field which will lead the world market. So, the goal of the Department of Energy Grid at Sangmyung University is to respond to social expectations to cultivate creative and practical ideas to help the world. It will play a key role in the future development of the green energy industry by educating businesses through the use of technology, policy, and management.
We had a brief interview with Ahn Hyo Jung, who started her undergrad in 2010, to learn more about the Department of Energy Grid at Sangmyung University.
1) Please define the department of Energy Grid in your own words
-> We learn to deploy energy more efficiently by way of the fusion of computer science and electrical engineering. We look at transmission and distribution, and methods of calculating and planning energy.
2) Why did you choose to study in the department of Energy Grid?
-> The word ‘Energy’ sounds fresh and new. I thought it would be a promising department. Energy problems are a worldwide issue which has been mentioned frequently. Other colleges have begun to establish departments of energy. I thought that this department, which puts an emphasis on transmission and distribution systems, is better than other universities that focus on material engineering.
3) What subject do you find most difficult and most interesting?
-> The most difficult subject is ‘Understanding the power system.’ When I saw even the top students in my department having difficulty with this subject, I knew that it was a very hard course. The most interesting subject is ‘Introduction of energy engineering.’ In this class, we carry a solar collector and set an angle. Then, we can see the effects with our eyes. We also go on field trips to the energy research institute. Furthermore, this subject gives me an open mind about energy problems.
4) What makes the department of Energy Grid so special to you?
->I was one of the first students in my department and I am very proud of my department since I’m one of the first freshmen in this, the only department of its kind in Korea. It is like my own department, and it is the only department which studies both the production and control of energy. The professors of my department are great! I know that my department is promising and it will continue to develop in the future. The students and professors all have good relationships with each other, which also makes my school life more fun and interesting.
5) How will the department of Energy Grid affect Korea?
->There are a lot of colleges which have established a department of energy, but none of them really focuses on the electric system like we do. Most departments focus on material engineering or chemical application engineering, whereas our department tries to cover all the effects and options to do with power. More directly, we can do manager’s work and create energy plans for the year by calculating the energy contents and requirements of a building. Therefore, we will be able to save energy and reduce environmental pollution. It will help national economic growth.
There are various jobs available in the industrial and academic world after graduating from the Department of Energy Grid at Sangmyung University. There is a shortage of professionals and graduates in this area, because it has only become popular recently. Besides, as Smart Grid and the energy industry is a convergence of various industries and engineering areas, it allows graduates to apply to various fields of industry.
As today’s industrial world---including major companies and foreign ones---increases the demand for professional graduates of the smart grid and energy fields, the future job market is expected to be quite promising. In addition, it will be possible for the energy grid majors to become scholars or researchers, entering public institutions or research institutes studying power and energy. On top of this, they can specialize in electrical engineering or the field of IT.
< Copyright © The Gachon Herald All rights reserved >