Graduation of Fellows 2023

20 November 2023
Fellows, staff, and guests at the graduation
Fellows, staff, and guests at the graduation

The 44th session of the Geothermal Training Programme closed on Thursday 16th of November, with 24 Fellows in the six month specialized courses.  This was a rather eventful year for our fellows with lots of volcanic unrest on the Reykjanes peninsula and a threat of a new eruption any day during their graduation week but the group managed to pull through and complete their final projects on time.  This year's group of Fellows came from 12 countries: Bolivia 2, China 1, Dominica 1, El Salvador 2, India 1, Indonesia 4, Kazakhstan 1, Kenya 6, Mongolia 2, Solomon Islands 1, Tanzania 2, and Uganda 1. This is the first time Kazakhstan and Solomon Islands participate in the Six Month Programme.  The Fellows were trained in: Geology 7, Reservoir engineering 6, Geophysics 6, Geothermal Utilization 3, and Drilling Technology 2.

From 1979-2023, 790 scientists and engineers from 67 countries have completed the annual six month training. They have come from countries in Africa (39%), Asia (34%), Latin America (16%), Central and Eastern Europe (10%), and Oceania (1%). Among these have been 199 women (25%).

The group arrived in the beginning of May and soon after the Reykjanes peninsula started stirring again resulting in an eruption.  A visit to the eruption site for geothermal experts is something that should not be missed and a visit to the site was an amazing experience for many of them.  This year's group arrived in summer as opposed to spring as has been the case with the previous groups so fewer complained about the cold and wind this time around.  However, the autumn and beginning of winter gave them a taste of the cold conditions this country has to offer.  Admittedly, the autumn was quite gentle on them this year with many calm sunny days.  The group was studious throughout their training but many enjoyed their weekends in exploring the countryside and the different activities on offer.  

GTP is proud of their achievements during these six months of the geothermal training as well as their personal development as they explored new horizons and expanded their international networking which will surely become beneficial in their future cooperation and development.   

At the ceremony speeches were given by Gudni Axelsson, director of the GTP, Anna Jóhannsdóttir, Deputy Permanent Secretary of State at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Árni Magnússon, CEO of Iceland GeoSurvey, and Oscar Cahuana Alarcon from Ministry of Hydrocarbons and Energy, Bolivia on behalf of the graduating class.  The ceremony was also broadcast on zoom.  

This session is the third one under the GRÓ brand as of 1 January 2020, the Geothermal Training Programme joined hands with UNESCO, under the umbrella of the GRÓ Centre.  

We congratulate all the fellows and look forward to following their careers in the future.

All the best to the class of 2023!