It is a pleasure to introduce Nikolina Shutinoska, a solar systems specialist in Solarpro Power. With a passion for Mathematics since childhood, Nikolina pursued a degree in Electrical Engineering to turn equations into real working solutions. Her love for nature and desire to contribute towards a greener tomorrow led her to enroll in a Master of Renewable Energy Sources program. In this interview, we will dive deeper into her role at Solarpro Power, the challenges she faces, and her thoughts on the future of the PV industry.
Tell us more about your role in Solarpro
As Solar System Specialist my role is mainly being part of Solarpro Power’s Electrical Design Team – creating the optimal techno-economical design, drawing the layouts, doing calculations, and collaborating with different kinds of engineers throughout the whole process of the project. Also, part of my role is making offers to potential clients, going to meetings, making contracts, and assisting with the documentation part of the projects in accordance with Macedonian Law.
How does an average day on the job look like for you?
My average day of work can vary according to the phase of the project we are currently working on. As every engineer I think will agree, the most exciting and fulfilling part is when you witness the design that you once created on paper working perfectly in real life.
What are the most important skills to bring to your position?
I think that apart from excellent theoretical knowledge that is crucial for every engineer, a logical and creative approach is the most important skill that every Electrical Designer should possess. I would add that being a team player and a good colleague is essential for all people, not just engineers, working on projects that require collaboration between departments.
What are the most common challenges you face in your work?
The most common challenge is finding the optimal solution for every project because from there starts everything and the whole project depends on it. Other challenges would include: working on a big project under a deadline, working on a few projects simultaneously, and changing the project because of an unexpected supply problem.
When did you start working in Solarpro?
After I graduated, Solarpro decided to open a branch in Macedonia, and they turned to my University- Faculty of Technical Sciences Bitola for a recommendation. Because I was the best graduate student of my class, I was one of the recommended students. After a successful interview, I started working at Solarpro Holding – branch in North Macedonia. Firstly, I worked mainly with electricity supply and trading, but my dream has always been to work with renewable energy sources, and I am happy to be working exactly that last year in Solarpro Power.
Why did you choose solar energy? What motivates you to work within the renewable sector?
Ever since I was a little kid I have been in love with Mathematics. Growing up I realized that Engineering is an area where Mathematics turns into magic and that is why I graduated Electrical Engineering – to turn equations into real working things. After graduating I started working in Solarpro Holding (in 2016) and my work in combination with my love for nature was a determining factor to enroll Master of Renewable Energy Sources. Living in one of the most polluted cities in the world, I feel obliged to contribute somehow towards a greener tomorrow and I am happy to be an Engineer within the renewable sector.
How do you think the PV industry will change in the next few years?
The biggest difference, especially in North Macedonia, is that people 5 years ago were not familiar with the benefits of Photovoltaics, distributed production, and self-consumption systems. At that time, we were doing presentations for companies, trying so hard to convince them that the future is in renewable energy sources. Nowadays, everybody is so interested in installing PV systems that we must select and accept only the best projects. Today, storage systems are something that photovoltaics were five years ago – you know that is the future, but you are still waiting for better efficiency, lower costs, and somebody else to install first.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start a job in renewables / to start a job in your position?
To be willing to learn new things and keep up with trends, while being curious and flexible at the same time. In this dynamic changing world, the engineer of the future must be interdisciplinary and have knowledge from different areas.
What are your interests outside of work?
In my free time, I like hiking in nature, photographing beautiful scenery and architecture, traveling and learning about new cultures and cuisines, relaxing with yoga and meditation, and of course spending time with my loved ones.