The Graduate Portfolio Program in Energy Studies (GPPES) was offered for the first time in the spring semester of 2014. It is open to students who are currently registered in any UT graduate program. The GPPES takes an interdisciplinary approach designed to give students a broad picture of the energy field that considers energy issues from an overall policy perspective, based on an understanding of the technological and environmental pressures involved. Completion of the GPPES is noted on the student’s final transcript, providing future employers with an indication of the student’s credentials in the field.
A core requirement of the GPPES is the gateway course, “Energy Technology and Policy,” jointly offered by a number of schools and colleges at UT, which focuses on the economic and environmental issues raised by both traditional and emerging energy technologies. GPPES students also attend a weekly symposium in which distinguished speakers from UT and elsewhere discuss current concerns and recent developments in the energy field – the program for the current semester can be found here.
The GPPES is a cooperative effort involving eight schools and colleges of The University of Texas at Austin. Students can design their own program to meet the coursework requirements of the GPPES by choosing from a wide range of courses offered by participating departments – a list of suitable courses can be found here. The diversity of available courses enables students to combine an overview of energy policy issues with the opportunity to dig more deeply into specific areas of interest.
Participants in the program carry out an energy oriented research project – this can be a Master’s thesis, a doctoral dissertation or a stand-alone project – and make a professional presentation of their results.
The program is managed by the Energy Institute: participating schools and colleges include the Cockrell School of Engineering, the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Natural Sciences, the Jackson School of Geosciences, the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, the McCombs School of Business, the School of Law and the School of Architecture. Other schools and colleges on the UT Austin campus may elect to participate in the future. Students who are currently enrolled in any UT graduate program may register for the portfolio.