Angel is from Spain, and joined IHE Delft after a 17-year professional career as geoscientist in the Oil and Gas exploration industry. This was not a minor decision for him: it implied leaving a technical domain he knew well and an industry where he was recognised as a top professional, to come back to school and start a new path into a new discipline. The motivation behind such a decision was to find a domain more coherent with his personal values and drivers.
Angel about his career transition: “I have grown enormously in the oil and gas industry, and lived exceptional experiences worldwide, combining sophisticated technology and holistic scientific analysis to unveil the earth resources. From technical positions, I evolved towards senior management positions in a major oil and gas company.
In the last years I was posted in Egypt, France, Angola, Mauritania, Dubai, and travelled for professional reasons to many countries in the world, evaluating opportunities to acquire exploration acreage for the company. In all those places, I was confronted with the critical impact water management has on food security, public health, human development, population migrations, environmental sustainability and, fatally, micro- to macro-scale conflicts. I therefore grew more and more interested in trying to understand the factors allowing a sustainable management of the existing resources.
Over time the discrepancy between my aspirations and the drivers of the oil and gas industry has grown. Consequently, I have decided to adapt my knowledge and skills, and devote my energy to water, the fundament of life in our planet. I believe the world today needs the humble contribution of each one of us in front of the crucial sustainable development goals agenda. My background and experience are a good starting point, which give me a broad perspective and a naturally multidisciplinary approach. However, I felt the need to start this personal and professional transition through a master degree in Water Science and Engineering, to acquire the relevant technical base.’’
Angel about IHE Delft: ‘’When it came to decide where to study, IHE Delft seemed like the most evident choice: along with its world-class reputation, I value its global, forward-looking approach, with a mix of technical excellence and social insight to hands-on problem solving. The consistency of the programs proposed by IHE Delft creates a privileged environment to study the social, cultural, environmental and technical interactions that occur in the management of water. On top of that, most of the students are already water professionals, and their diverse experiences enrich even more the program. I am convinced that this master, combined with my current technical and transverse skills, and particularly my deep motivation to find my “true workshop” (where actions and values are completely aligned), are the necessary assets to succeed in this evolution.”
When Angel will finish his specialisation in Hydrology and Water Resources at IHE Delft, he would like to participate in projects aiming at improving the life quality of people, working with a non-profit organization, a development agency, or a research institute, to propose and implement sustainable solutions to specific water management problems.
About studying at IHE Delft: ‘’The teachers all have a strong technical background and seem very experienced in dealing with problems that are by nature multidisciplinary. IHE Delft has a fantastic atmosphere, and I am deeply inspired by my fellow colleagues, who share a deep motivation and commitment. I am amazed by this community of young and talented professionals coming from all the corners of the world, moved by the same desire to improve the living conditions in the planet.”
On life in Delft and the Netherlands: “Dutch seem to value common sense and collective thinking, everything is very well organized. It is revealing that the Dutch word for “society” is “samenleving”, literally “living together”. Delft is a lovely city to live in.’’
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