As an undergraduate, Michael Francis lacked direction. He wanted to do something meaningful but didn’t know what it might be—until he heard about the professional master’s degree in Resource and Energy Demand Analysis from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“I knew this was an opportunity that could change my life for the better,” Francis says. “It could teach me the skills I’d need to make an impact on the world. I think this program will open up doors that would have been otherwise closed to me.”
The professional master’s degree in Resource and Energy Demand Analysis (REDA) gives students the quantitative skills to manage and evaluate energy-efficiency and resource conservation programs. Housed within UW-Madison’s Agricultural & Applied Economics department, it prepares them for successful careers with utilities, consulting firms, regulators, and other organizations involved in protecting natural resources. There’s a high demand for such specialized skills, given the growth of energy and resource-conservation programs around the world.
Ahead of the game
Francis graduated from UW-Madison last year with a degree in economics and environmental studies, and he liked the fact that he could complete the REDA program in only 10 months.
“As a one-year program, REDA seemed like the ideal way to earn a graduate degree and get ahead of the game,” he says. “I have practical skills and knowledge now that put me ahead of my peers.”
REDA students take a combination of face-to-face and online classes, learning economic theory, survey methodology, econometrics, and statistics—everything they’ll need to find jobs. Francis was impressed with the quality of the instruction.
“The department has some amazing instructors,” he says. “Bill Provencher and Bethany Glinsmann have tremendous insight into the world of consulting and provide many examples of good and not-so-good practices within the industry. Meanwhile, professors like Dan Phaneuf and Dominic Parker provide thought-provoking questions pertaining to the world of environmental and natural resource economics while stimulating thoughtful discussions of plausible solutions. All the instructors are willing to explain difficult concepts and are always open to discuss your ideas.”
Francis made strong connections in the Resource and Energy Demand Analysis program, and he knows he’ll stay in touch with his fellow students.
“They’ll undoubtedly become a major part of my network group and, more importantly, my lifelong friends,” he says.
Having nearly completed his coursework, Francis is certain that enrolling in REDA was the right decision.
“REDA advanced my knowledge in energy, environmental, and natural resource economics,” he says. “I am certainly more advanced in my ability to perform econometric analysis and properly evaluate statistical results. What else could you do in one year of your life that could benefit you more than this down the road?”
For more information on the master’s degree in Resource and Energy Demand Analysis, see here.