Shabari Basu received her MBA from UNC Charlotte in 2013. She also holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in space sciences from California Institute of Technology. She is the technical director in the renewable energy (wind, solar and battery storage) department at Duke Energy. In 2016, she was named an honoree of the Charlotte Business Journal Women in Business awards. In 2017, she was honored with a Charlotte Business Journal 40 Under 40 award.
What does your job entail?
I am responsible for energy assessments for renewable projects, technology selection for projects in development and supervisory control / data acquisition systems for remote control of the generators for operational sites. I lead a group of five engineers and work with various consultants to keep the wind and solar farms running smoothly with remote visibility.
Congratulations on your Women in Business award. What insights have you gained as a woman in business that you can share with students and alumni?
Women are exceling in business on par with men. All the opportunities are accessible and out there for women to explore. There are also women’s support groups in most big organizations and the community to create a network of women professionals and share each other’s experiences. There is a dearth of women in technical fields, so it would be nice to see more women enrolling in science and engineering programs in the future. Diversity in the workplace is very critical for innovative thinking. Women bring great perspective to the table.
What kinds of opportunities did you have at UNC Charlotte?
I wasn’t able to utilize all the opportunities while at UNC Charlotte given I was working full time. But the wide variety of networking and alumni events, along with seminars, was a very enriching experience beyond the core curriculum. The professors were very knowledgeable and had a great sense of humor.
Why did you choose UNC Charlotte?
UNC Charlotte was a very convenient location in uptown Charlotte and the best value for money from the available options I had. Of course I didn’t know how great the faculty and curriculum were until I joined the program, but I soon found out and was glad I was in the program.
What did you learn in the Belk College that has best prepared you for your career?
I learned that the softer skills such as organizational behavior, change management and expectations management are very critical to being successful professionally. Being in a technical field, one often gets sucked into the minute project details ignoring these equally important items.
What advice do you have for current Belk College students?
I would advise students to take advantage of the various extracurricular opportunities that the college offers. It is really the best way to learn and broaden your horizon. Also, the professors are very welcoming and eager to answer your questions. So make good use of the office hours and discussions outside of class.
Anything else you’d like to say about UNC Charlotte or the Belk College of Business?
UNC Charlotte and the Belk College of Business have great potential. They bring a very conducive environment for higher education for not only locals, but students from all over the world.