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Guest Speaker Series: Aly Sidi on Leadership and Clean Energy

March 3, 2022
UBC MEL Guest Speaker Aly Sidi on Clean Energy

Earlier this year, Aly Sidi, VP Software Engineering of Clean Energy Solutions at Generac Power Systems, shared insights about leadership and clean energy in a presentation followed by a Q&A session to students in the Master of Engineering Leadership program. Aly’s presentation highlighted ways to lead effectively and the idea of leadership as not just a title, but a privilege and responsibility.

Sustainable energy sources

Generac Power Systems is a leading energy technology company that provides advanced power grid software solutions, backup and prime power systems for home and industrial appliances, solar and battery storage solutions, and much more. Generac is committed to sustainable, cleaner energy products in its efforts to revolutionize the 21st-century electrical grid.

When asked about what inspires him to work in clean energy, Aly responded with a quote by Robert Baden Powell who said: “Try and leave this world a little better than you found it, and when your turn comes to die, you can die happy in feeling that at any rate, you have not wasted your time but have done your best”.

This sentiment drives the work that Aly does in pushing towards the future and innovating the way that energy is harnessed and used.

As the conversation shifted into clean energy, a trend that Aly identified in the industry is that of the increasing need for alternative energy sources with minimal by-products.

With the increased population and demand for electric vehicles, there is a growing amount of pressure being placed on the grid. This leaves space for the rise of solar energy in residential markets.

Industry and leadership trends

The information that Aly provided taught MEL students not only about industry trends but also about the business side of the field and how policies can directly impact energy development.

Blending the technical with business in conversation is a theme familiar to MEL students who take a unique combination of technical engineering from UBC Faculty of Applied Science and businesses courses from UBC Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School.

Students that attended the session left feeling inspired, with 83% of respondents rating the presentation as “excellent”. Attendees were pleased with the opportunity to connect with an industry leader in clean energy and to brush up on both market and technology trends. Aly also provided students with valuable advice on how to interview effectively which was received with great enthusiasm.

Bridging technical and business acumen

Not only is Aly Sidi a seasoned leader but he is also a creative problem solver who possesses both strong technical and business acumen. This allows him to effectively bridge the gap between the needs of software developers, customers, and businesses. The idea of bridging this gap resonated well with MEL students who are at the cusp of their own journeys to bring together business with engineering and to become effective leaders in their respective fields.