Being part of the Graduate program and working at Trustpower has been great in allowing me to be involved in various areas of the business.
After completing a double degree in Energy Studies and Economics, and a PGDipSci in Energy Studies at Otago University I joined the Trustpower graduate program in 2013. I started as a Graduate Analyst in the Major Projects Team in Trustpower’s Generation Division.
During my time in that role I worked on projects for various teams in Generation, such as the Comms and Controls team and the Engineering team. Projects I worked on include upgrading Trustpower’s satellite systems, dam enhancements for civil safety, and gaining consents and information for prospective wind farm sites. I also assisted my team with the construction of a hydro scheme in the Hawkes Bay and the construction of a wind farm in South Australia.
I then moved into the Strategy and Growth division where I penned regulatory submissions for the company. This allowed me to get a wider understanding of the industry as a whole. Key issues that we looked at were the proposed TPM (Transmission Pricing Methodology) and the Australian RET (Renewable Energy Target) review.
I have now taken a role in the Wind Asset Management team. My role is a combination of asset management of our current wind farms and looking at new development opportunities in the wind space. As some of our wind assets are nearing the end of their initial design life there are challenges around getting the best out of our assets. We are always exploring end of life options and efficiency upgrades. We maintain a wind monitoring program and are always looking at new opportunities.
Being part of the Graduate program and working at Trustpower has been great in allowing me to be involved in various areas of the business. Gaining experience helped inform my decision to join the Wind Asset Management team in a role I really enjoy.
Trustpower has provided me with excellent opportunity to broaden my knowledge about the electricity, gas, and telecommunications industries, while developing my analytical skills and commercial acumen.
I chose Engineering Science because I’m fascinated with the dynamics of large, complex networks. This same fascination drew me toward studying the large network of generators and consumers that make up our electricity sector. This led me to study electricity market design and optimisation for my Master of Engineering thesis.
I started working for Trustpower immediately after completing my Masters, moving to their office in Mount Maunganui in 2014. Initially, I worked with the Energy Trading team, which is responsible for managing Trustpower’s exposure wholesale electricity prices. These can change significantly from hour to hour and month to month. In this team, I had a hand in developing and improving tools that forecast wholesale price distributions and estimate Trustpower’s exposure to these prices.
At the beginning of 2015 I transferred to the Strategy and Growth team which is responsible for managing Trustpower’s regulatory risk, analysing potential investments and acquisitions, and aiding in the development of unified company strategies. My role has been to model and analyse inputs for business cases and to analyse regulatory policies.
I have been lucky to have had exposure to a wide range of business units that have allowed me to see how all the pieces fit together. Trustpower has provided me with excellent opportunity to broaden my knowledge about the electricity, gas, and telecommunications industries, while developing my analytical skills and commercial acumen. I’ve been made to feel very welcome, and I’ve been given great opportunities to succeed and learn.
If you’re up for the challenge of starting your career off working in a company that is constantly changing, adapting and testing its limits, then go for it.
Mike is a former Graduate, who completed the programme in 2011. Mike was appointed to the permanent position of Sales and Marketing Analyst and since then, has been promoted to the position of Campaign Manager. This is a busy and critical role at Trustpower, overseeing a team of up to 15 staff and four direct reports.
Mike completed a Bachelor of Applied Science (Energy Management) with 1st Class Honours at Otago University. He applied for the Trustpower Graduate Programme because he wanted to work for a nationally recognised energy company, plus it was in the sunny Bay of Plenty and somewhere he’d never been before.
Over the years, Mike says he’s particularly enjoyed the constant change, challenge, and working with interesting and knowledgeable people who are leaders in their industry.
Mike says to people who are considering applying for the Trustpower Graduate Programme, “If you’re up for the challenge of starting your career off working in a company that is constantly changing, adapting and testing its limits, then go for it. I’ve grown so much in my time here. Personally and professionally I have tried to absorb as much knowledge as I can from the great people I’ve been able to work with. It’s gone so fast, seems like only last year I was starting, and now it’s nearly 5 years on. I couldn’t have asked for a better start to my professional career.”