Ciaran Gara
23 May 2024

Embracing New Horizons: My Journey from Glasgow to Aberdeen

Nine months ago, I embarked on the start of my career in sustainability with Goal7. It was a thrilling transition that not only marked the beginning of a new professional chapter but also prompted a move from Glasgow to the city of Aberdeen. Since then, I've been immersing myself in the challenges and opportunities of sustainable innovation, all while falling in love with life beside the sea

What made you apply for a grad job at Goal7?

After university, I embarked on a journey to further develop the solutions I had created to combat climate change. I started by joining a Scottish accelerator program called Elevator, that focused on supporting innovative startups and projects. Through this program, I had the opportunity to work with a diverse team of experts and mentors who guided me in refining my ideas and transforming them into viable solutions. It was during this time that I realised that my passion lay in the intersection of innovation and sustainability. When I came across the opportunity to join Goal7, I was immediately drawn to its innovative approach and shared vision of addressing climate issues. I saw it as more than just a job opportunity; it was a chance to be part of a team that shared my passion for sustainability and was actively working towards solutions for a more sustainable future.

What makes you passionate about sustainability?

My passion for sustainability comes from observing how nature grows, adapts, and thrives and how it has evolved over millions of years. I've found that drawing from nature's timeless principles can help form solutions that address sustainable challenges. Take my work on a shade protection structure for the agriculture sector as an example; it's inspired by the way forests provide natural shade to conserve water and help crops thrive, whilst the mechanisms for operating are taken from how a flower blooms!

What was it like moving from Glasgow to Aberdeen?

Moving from Glasgow to Aberdeen for the grad job was a significant change, but an exciting one. Aberdeen's strong focus on energy and sustainability perfectly aligned with my career goals. The Aberdeen area offers a wide range of natural scenery, from beautiful beaches to picturesque rivers. While I miss some aspects of Glasgow, the move has been incredibly rewarding both professionally and personally.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

One of the most exciting aspects of my role is the opportunity to work on a diverse range of projects, meaning my days and weeks are always varied. Whether it's developing CCS strategies or implementing solutions to improve the team's way of working, each piece of work presents its own unique challenges and opportunities for growth. What I particularly find rewarding, is the level of responsibility I've been entrusted with, even within my relatively short time here. Within just seven months, I've had the chance to meet clients and contribute to important discussions. This level of trust and empowerment has not only accelerated my learning but also made me feel valued as a team member from day one. It's this dynamic and supportive environment that makes coming to work each day an exciting and fulfilling experience.

What are you looking forward to most about the year ahead?

In the year ahead, I'm excited about the opportunities for personal and professional growth. I'm eager to further develop myself, both in terms of skills and expertise, and to continue making meaningful contributions to the team. I'm particularly looking forward to the chance to work on new projects and meeting new clients - I thrive when pushing boundaries and driving progress. Beyond that, I'm also looking forward to collaborating with my colleagues on diverse and impactful projects. The exchange of ideas and collective effort towards common goals is where true innovation flourishes.

What do you get up to when not at work?

In my free time, I love being in the outdoors and, in particular, to wild swim. I have a passion for adventure and the thrill of exploring new, uncharted places. Whether it's hiking through dense forests, swimming in pristine lochs, or simply discovering hidden gems wherever I go, I find joy and excitement in every new experience. The exploration side of life keeps me energised and continually inspires my work in sustainability.