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The IWP Internship Experience: Caroline Kane

My time interning last summer (2023) at IWP was a worthwhile and great experience. I was an intern along with another partner, Thea, under Dr. Sara Vakhshouri.

We studied and researched humanitarian aid in Namibia and the potential for hydrogen infusion into existing natural gas infrastructure in the Mediterranean region. Both topics forced me to place humanitarian and climate-backed goals on an international scale. I really appreciated our work with Namibia due to the ability for me to creatively think and problem solve. We had to come up with a water-capturing mechanism for a small, drought-ridden town in Namibia that was eventually pitched to its diplomat for potential implementation.

The opportunity to solve on-the-ground issues with tangible solutions was inspiring, and Dr. Vakhshouri’s vast network of people with political power provided me and Thea with tools to actually mechanize findings to see real-world effects. This part of the research was definitely more hands-on, and I appreciated the ability to work closely with leaders to engage change.

The second part of my research on hydrogen infusion gave me research and academic writing skills that I would not have had if it weren’t for this internship. I was in charge of the realization of an 18-page research paper and many hours of research on complex, STEM-based topics such as combustion systems, storage facilities, and the inner workings of energy grids to find out if hydrogen infusion is feasible.

After the science research (which was most of the paper), I was able to tie these findings into economic and political contexts which came more naturally to me as a Sustainability Major (LA). Although this part of my research was definitely more rigorous and challenging, I learned a ton, gained new academic interests like scientific writing, and deeply enhanced my research, writing, and critical analysis skills.

I am still in contact with Dr. Vakhshouri and am grateful for her time, dedication, and mentorship, both in and out of the internship.

Caroline Kane
IWP Intern, Summer 2023

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Caroline Kane
Caroline Kane