Júlia Duarte


My name is Júlia Duarte. I'm from Belo Horizonte, Brazil. I go to the Illinois Institute of Technology where I am a M.S. of Industrial Technology and Operations candidate.

What sustainability, energy, and community issues are important to you?

In my opinion, these three topics are of equal importance as they seem to be very closely related. I believe that energy is a quite important pillar for social and economic development of communities in general (remote areas or not). However, delivering the necessary amount of energy while securing communities’ development in a sustainable manner is still a challenge in many parts of the world that will hopefully be overcome rather sooner than later.

What exciting projects/research are you working on now?

Right now, I’m in a phase in which I’m deciding the topic of my final research project so that I can finish up my Master’s program. I’m inclined towards researching about transforming organic waste from food processors around the Chicagoland area into soil amendment. However, I believe that being immersed in SISE and being around people from diverse backgrounds can end up triggering some other ideas that may interest me even more.

What are your plans for the next five years?

My plan is to finish my degree by the end of this year and secure a good professional opportunity afterwards. Besides this, I’m not too sure what life will bring my way!

What made you want to apply to SISE?

The unique learning experience that SISE provides and the belief that the program can be an important step into redirecting my professional career. In addition to that, the chance to be around people who share common interests towards energy and sustainability is rather singular so I wouldn’t consider missing the application for an opportunity like this.

What are you most looking forward to doing in Chicago?

I’m definitely looking forward to meeting the people who will be participating in the program as well as to showing this great city to my fellow SISE participants who haven’t had the chance to get to know it just yet.

Do you like Cats? If not, are you willing to learn to like cats?

I used to consider myself a dog person. No space for cats in my life. However, about 2 years ago I was visiting a friend who has two rescue cats. I got to say that by the end of the two weeks I was around, there were countless cuddles!! Does that make me a cat person as well?