UMN Energy Club
2021 - 2022
Thomas Haupert (he/him)
Thomas is a senior studying Computer Science. He is interested in seeing how technology can be made more energy efficient and how the creative use of computing can help the environment. When outside of school, his interests include biking, gaming, and technology.
Olivia Holgate (she/her)
Olivia is a senior pursuing a degree in Environmental Engineering and a minor in Sustainability Studies. With her degree, she wants to be able to apply engineering principles to help make the world a cleaner and more sustainable place. She is also involved with Engineering Without Borders and University Episcopal Community. In her free time, she loves playing ukulele and spending time outdoors with friends and family.
Valerie Paul (they/them)
Valerie is in their third year at the U, majoring in English and minoring in Linguistics and Creative Writing. They plan to go into either creative writing or editing and publishing and are always looking for ways to bring energy and sustainability advocacy into those fields. Within Energy Club they focus on environmental justice, especially combining technical and humanitarian perspectives. In their spare time they enjoy reading, stargazing, and baking.
Nolan Krause (he/him)
Nolan is a junior pursuing a degree in industrial and systems engineering and a minor in environmental science, policy and management. He hopes to eventually work with large-scale renewable energy production in order to make it more efficient and equitable, but is interested in just about everything relating to sustainability and social justice. Beyond that, he loves to collect records, play baseball, and spend time outdoors.
Ethan Ashbrook (he/him)
Ethan is a sophomore majoring in chemistry and pursuing a minor in sustainability. In the future, he hopes to work towards researching how to optimize energy systems and implement modern chemical science advances, as well as combining different energy sources to help create the best possible energy grid for our future. His hobbies include watching old movies, playing the melodica, taking long walks, and playing lots of Tetris.
Social Media Director
Sam Nguyen (he/him)
Sam is a junior pursuing a degree in Bioproducts & Biosystems Engineering and a minor in Geographic Information Sciences. He is a passionate environmentalist and has a fascination for sustainability and innovation. In the future, he hopes to incorporate his interests into the field of engineering and research solutions to environmental problems using bioremediation efforts. In his free time, he loves to thrift, bake, listen to music, and spend time outdoors.
Erica Houser (she/her)
Erica is a junior majoring in Plant and Microbial Biology and minoring in Mathematics. After her undergraduate education she intends to study forest ecology at the graduate level and eventually conduct research in this field. She is interested in climate change as it pertains to forest range and migration, succession, invasive species, and how these concepts can be used to improve forest management and reforestation practices. In her free time, she enjoys music, drinking tea, and spending time with friends and family.
Caitlyn Komar (she/her)
Caitlyn is a sophomore majoring in chemical engineering and pursuing minors in sustainability studies and mathematics. In her future, she hopes to work in development of renewable and clean energy and the large-scale applications of it, or the future of sustainable development in all areas of production and technology. In her free time, she loves to read, go rock climbing, listen to music, and loves being outdoors in any way she can.
Founder: Kerry Wang
As a lifelong environmentalist, Kerry pursued and earned a BS in Chemical Engineering at Rice University to better understand sustainable technologies. During this time, an Environmental Sociology course opened his eyes to the many human factors - politics, business, economics, culture, and social justice - that play a role in society's relationship with energy and the environment. Realizing how many aspects of life and society affect each other and energy in complex, non-linear ways, Kerry grew frustrated that discussions of "sustainability" often occurred in such segregated academic silos. This led him to found the UMN Energy Club in Fall 2015, while a PhD candidate in Materials Science and Engineering. Kerry believes young people today, who will be climate leaders of tomorrow, need to develop leadership skills allowing them to not only understand energy more holistically, but to work and communicate effectively with those with different views and experiences on energy. Outside of sustainability, Kerry enjoys partner acrobatics, Bollywood dance, and martial arts. His PhD work involves mathematical modeling of a novel process for manufacturing high-quality single-crystalline silicon solar cells.