Current Students

Below are profiles of current ESS students. Those outside of the official ESS dual degree (MS/MSE) program, but with interdisciplinary education in sustainability and engineering from the University of Michigan, are also included.

Christian Hitt
ESS Sustainable Energy Systems – Sustainable Systems/Mechanical Engineering
Christian is pursuing a dual degree (M.S./M.S.E) in Sustainable Systems and Environmental Engineering at the University of Michigan. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Arkansas and earned his B.S. in Biological Engineering with an Environmental Concentration (Minors in Sustainability and Mathematics). For his undergraduate senior design project, Christian worked with a team to design a solar powered pumping system to provide surface water to a reservoir. The system would be used for a research farm in Harrisburg, AR. This reduced emissions from traditional diesel pumping and reduced high withdrawals from the local aquifer. He aims to use his engineering skillset to implement sustainable solutions. His interests include sustainable energy implementation, energy demand reduction, energy efficiency, decarbonization, and sustainable infrastructure development.

Larson Lovdal
ESS Sustainable Energy Systems – Sustainable Systems/Mechanical Engineering
Larson is pursing dual degrees in mechanical engineering and sustainable systems. He is an energy enthusiast building expertise at the intersection of technology and finance to accelerate innovation and an equitable clean energy transition.

 


Jeffrey Manner
ESS Sustainable Aquatic Systems – Sustainable Systems/Mechanical Engineering
Jeffrey is pursing dual degrees in mechanical engineering and sustainable systems.

Saarah Maxon
ESS Sustainable Energy Systems – Sustainable Systems/Mechanical Engineering
Saarah is pursing dual degrees in mechanical engineering and sustainable systems.

Jackson Teener
ESS Sustainable Energy Systems – Sustainable Systems/Environmental EngineeringJack is pursuing an M.S. in Sustainable Systems and an M.S.E. in Environmental Engineering. His research interests include direct air capture of CO2 to make liquid jet fuels. He is passionate about ensuring we have a sustainable energy transition with a specific focus on energy efficiency and decarbonization, whether in a corporate, non-profit, or governmental space. He has experience in energy finance (LCOE, NPV) as it relates to sustainable technologies, performing life cycle analysis, quantifying energy efficiency projects, analyzing sustainability policy, and adapting to new modeling software. He is also interested in the importance of community partnership in developing sustainable systems and empowering vulnerable populations with sustainability solutions.

Swathy Vidyadharan
ESS Sustainable Energy Systems – Sustainable Systems/Mechanical Engineering
Swathy is studying Sustainable Systems and Mechanical Engineering. She graduated in 2021 with her undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from Iowa State University. During her summers in undergrad, she interned at two companies in the energy auditing industry and HVAC industry. She currently works for the Center for Sustainable Systems, doing research with Dr. Parth Vaishnav on autonomous EV trucking. Some of her other interests include carbon sequestration on a large scale, green cities, and clean energy for transportation. Apart from clean energy and sustainability, Swathy enjoys rock climbing, traveling, badminton, and practicing yoga and meditation.