Ms. Hadia Sajjad's Profile
Hadia Sajjad is an educationist by profession, serving currently as a lecturer at the University of Central Punjab, Lahore. Despite STEMM being an alien ﬁeld to women in Pakistan, her strongest motivation to make her career in electrical engineering was to gain insight on the energy crisis in the country. During her Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from University of Engineering and Technology, her focus was on innovation in energy production from non-conventional energy sources. Therefore, she decided to continue her studies in renewable electrical energy systems. After completing her Bachelor’s degree in 2012, she started teaching at National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences as a lab instructor within the Electrical Engineering Department.
Teaching had always been her passion. This led her to Master’s program at New York University on the Fulbright in 2014. During her two academic years, she worked on DC microgrids, smart grids and space based solar power systems. She also volunteered at the 1st International Conference on DC Micro-grids in Atlanta and attended 42nd IEEE Photovoltaics Specialist Conference in New Orleans. All her experiences in the U.S. added to her learning and development as an engineer and researcher.
Scope of Renewables in Pakistan
Several South Asian countries have chronic power shortages that limit electricity supply at least a few hours each day. The affording class resorts to stand-by alternatives like power generators and uninterrupted power supplies (UPS batteries), which are costly and polluting. Conversely, the non-affording class turns towards solid fuel alternatives, such as ﬁrewood, animal dung or coal which exposes them to high levels of indoor air pollution. One of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, adopted by heads of state at the United Nations headquarters in September 2015, is dedicated to energy. It calls for “affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all”, and sets the target of universal access by 2030. However, the question arises, how can South Asian countries give reliable electricity to their people without further aggravating pollution? The climate crisis and imperative of reducing energy poverty provide a strong case for collective action by the eight countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation. In Pakistan, the government’s initiative of incorporating renewable energy sources is a good step. Furthermore, both students and researchers in Pakistan need to be motivated to explore the potential of renewable energy sources to mitigate the energy crisis. Being an instructor at a university, my goal is to inspire and encourage students, academicians and people from other walks of life to realize the need for switching to renewables. Simultaneously, using my university as a platform, I would love to collaborate with government departments for further innovation and development of in energy sector in Pakistan.
Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, and Medicine
Ms. Hadia Sajjad
University of Central Punjab, Lahore
New York University