Climate Hero – Jennifer Griffith, NMIS

Company: National Manufacturing Institute Scotland | Manufacturing Skills Academy (NMIS | MSA)

Job Title: Net Zero Skills Project Lead

School: Matched with Cleveden Secondary School

How I chose this career path:

Some of us are blessed with knowing exactly what we want to do in life from an early age. If you’re sitting there and you know that you want to be a dentist, a doctor, an accountant, or a high school teacher then your decisions will be much clearer throughout your life.

But I was never like that. Today I work as a ‘Net Zero Skills Project Lead’, but the term ‘Net Zero’ didn’t exist yet when I was at school. Or at least, I’d never heard of it. It’s impossible to know what opportunities life may bring, let alone choose a career title whether you’re 14, 18 or 30 years old.

So as someone without that clear career goal in mind, I’ve always followed my interests. Whether that’s selecting school subjects, university courses, or jobs to apply for. I knew I had a passion for art, the environment and science, which lead me to look for courses that had a combination of those interests. Eventually I choose ‘product design’ at university because it seemed like a great balance between art and science, although the environmental element was a bit less clear to me then.

But once you’re in a field, you start to see the opportunities that you can influence or move in to. My friends went on to specialise in sports apparel, food and drink, materials science, automotive, aerospace, and countless more. For me, I started to see opportunities in the area that I felt I was missing – environmentalism. I focused on specialising in eco-conscious concepts within product design; the circular economy, remanufacture, and those led me to net zero. And that’s not the end of my journey, I don’t know what my job title will be 5 years from now, but I’m excited to find out.

So for those of us who haven’t decided what exactly we want to be in our lives yet, taking a course in engineering doesn’t close doors on opportunities; it opens them.

Why Climate Heroes is important to me: 

Nature needs more allies, and we need more jobs that allow people from all walks of life not just to ‘make-do’ but to thrive. The best way to achieve both is to get people into high paying, quality jobs that support the environment.

Jennifer NMIS