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5 Questions with Developer Relationship Manager Eoin Cahill

Five Questions with Developer Relationship Manager Eoin Cahill, College of Natural Resources, Eoin Cahill, feature
Photo courtesy of Eoin Cahill.

Eoin Cahill, who graduated with a degree in Sustainable Materials and Technology in 2018, is now working as a developer relationship manager for Leyline Renewable Capital. We sat down with Eoin to learn about their work in renewable energy and why they chose Sustainable Materials and Technology.

What is a typical day in your job like?

Leyline Renewable Capital provides pre-construction financing for developers of renewable energy projects, including solar, wind and biogas technologies. A typical day for me involves interfacing with my colleagues and our developers to ensure projects move seamlessly from funding to exit. I am responsible for on-boarding investments, understanding the legal and financial structure, and tracking project status and obligations of the developer.

What inspired you to study Sustainable Materials and Technology?

If I’m being completely honest, I chose Sustainable Materials and Technology because I didn’t think I’d be happy in the engineering program I had originally applied for. I was initially attracted to the buzz word, right? “Sustainable” just sounded so appropriate for my interest in the environment.

I didn’t really know what I was getting into, but upon entering the program, I found a really unique opportunity to learn cross-functionally. Sustainable Materials and Technology isn’t just about one thing or one subject; it’s an amazing conglomerate of environmental science, engineering and business education, and to me, is pretty invaluable.

What impact are you making through your position?

In this position, and with my company, I am making a direct impact on the prevalence of renewable energy in the United States. The development phase of a renewable energy project comes with a plethora of regulatory and monetary hurdles which need to be navigated meticulously to ensure the project can move into construction. Leyline is providing a unique source of capital to ensure developers can move swiftly through development, creating a clearer line of sight from idea to reality.

How did the College of Natural Resources prepare you for your current position?

As a student in the College of Natural Resources, I believe a cross-disciplinary approach was at the forefront of my education. Not only has this benefitted me personally, but it has had a profound impact on my professional career.

Although I enjoy honing in and focusing on a certain area of expertise, I feel that the College of Natural Resources always encouraged me to take a step back and consider the bigger picture. In my current position, the ability to see the forest and the trees is of utmost importance, and I can really appreciate the College of Natural Resources for taking that kind of approach to educating it’s students. 

What advice do you have for current College of Natural Resources students?

Keep an open mind. There is more to the “real world” than what you learned in undergrad. Sure, your classes may seem and feel very specific, but there’s more there that’s of value and applicable to your professional future.

Talk to your professors, befriend them and don’t be afraid to call them out. You’re in college to learn more than just your major subject, but you have to engage and you have to reflect each and every day. If you don’t, you probably won’t leave satisfied … and that’s no fun for anyone.