GWNET brings you the 2nd instalment of the “Meet the Women in Energy Empowerment” series which celebrates the work and achievements of the women who are part of the Women in Energy Empowerment Mentoring Programme. This programme is made up of 30 mentee-mentor tandems, with mentees from Kazakhstan, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine. Meet mentee, Tetiana Tsishkovska, an Analyst at NPC Ukrenergo in Ukraine.
1) Tell us a little about yourself. What do you love most about what you do?
I was born and raised in the Kyiv region of Ukraine. My parents are engineers, which probably influenced my choice of profession. During my student years, I worked part-time in advertising and even tried my hand at business.
After graduating from the magistracy in the specialization of power supply systems, I worked as an engineer in the department issuing technical specifications. This work gave me a strong knowledge base in the technical features of connecting objects to the power grid and related processes. I continued to work in this direction in the company, which installed solar power plants. Starting with the launch of a new model of the electricity market in Ukraine, I worked in parallel for an electricity supplier company, which gave me an understanding of the processes in the electricity market.
For doing a good job, I got promoted to head of the department, but due to the situation with Covid-19 I had to change jobs. Now I work as an analyst at Ukrenergo. My main task is to develop reports on the electricity market, analyze tariff changes, and do other interesting tasks. Most of all, in my work I like to get results and benefit people.
2) What were your goals when you started working in the energy sector? What are your goals today?
My first goal, when I started working in this area was to understand the details of my work and pick up the necessary knowledge. Over time, I gained experience and was able to help others. This became my second goal. I began to help people get the technical conditions to connect to the power grid while accompanying all the processes until the actual connection of electricity to the customer’s site.
Since the launch of a new model of the electricity market in Ukraine, I have also actively begun to delve into new processes and help clients with changes in the electricity supplier and the calculation of the electricity tariff.
Now, I work as an analyst in a transmission system operator in Ukraine and I see issues that are even more global. My current goal is not only to help people and to do analysis on the indicators or processes but to also actively join in solving problems in Ukraine’s energy sector.
3) What are the opportunities for sustainable energy in your country?
Ukraine has a huge potential for almost all types of renewable energy sources. My country has the highest “green” tariff on the continent, which will attract investors. However, in order to further integrate renewable energy sources into the energy system of Ukraine, it is necessary to eliminate the problems with a shortage of manoeuvrable capacities.
The European Commission has identified Ukraine as a priority partner in the Green Hydrogen Initiative for a European Green Deal, but the obstacle to the development of hydrogen energy in Ukraine is the need to modernize the gas transport infrastructure.
It should be noted that Ukraine is an industrial and agricultural country, in which the potential for biomethane production is estimated at 7.8 billion m³/year. Therefore, I believe that the initial priority direction is the conversion of gas-powered flexibility generation to biomethane, as well as the combined production of heat and electricity from biomass.
The main challenge for women working in the energy sector is outdated views of female roles. Until now, many people are surprised when a woman chooses a “male profession”. Sometimes it is very difficult to prove yourself when you are not even given a chance, when your work is not even looked at – because you did it, and when no one will rely on you.
However, despite all the difficulties, I continue to work on myself. Every day I read articles or specialized literature, improve my proficiency in specialized programs, ask for more difficult tasks at work, and take any initiative. I cannot change everything, but I can improve myself. And even if it is not now, in the future, I will be able to become a worthy specialist.
Life is sometimes unpredictable, but I hope that in 5 years I will be able to join the group of experts in the field of energy. I would like to actively help introduce European practices and solve current problems.
This is my ambitious goal and I believe that surrounded by women who have already realized themselves as highly qualified specialists, with the bits of advice from my mentor, I will be able to gain new experience and knowledge to work effectively in the future.
6) What advice would you give to women hoping to join the sustainable energy sector?
I would advise them to do what they like and not pay attention to all the prejudices. There are many interesting jobs for women in the energy sector. Ukraine is now actively developing in this direction and you can make your own small contribution to this.
For example, you can do research, analyze metrics, design solar power plants, make calculations, or become a trader in the electricity market. Feel free to choose the direction that interests you and follow your dream.
Read more about GWNET’s mentoring programmes here.