April 2023

“Ultimately, ‘sustainability’ is going to be synonymous with ‘business’ by the time you enter the workforce.” They will probably learn how to drive in a gas car, but when they buy their own vehicle, it might be electric. If high school students have kids one day, those kids might never ride in a gas car. Q: What advice do you have for High School students who value sustainability and are currently planning their futures? A: What’s interesting about EVs as a solution to climate change is that there is now overwhelming consumer interest. All of the most exciting vehicles in 2023 are electric. In many markets, there is a waitlist of months for every electric car model. Auto manufacturers literally can’t make EVs fast enough. So, I would split my advice into two categories: First, there’s a huge shortage of students going into trades after high school. If you’ve always struggled with traditional classes and are worried about going to university, you should seriously consider trade school. University degrees are great, but vocational courses are also a good option because due to the surge in demand for EV chargers and other clean energy projects, there’s a huge global shortage in electricians and other tradespeople. Now, every electrician I know makes more money than the average “white collar” worker. Second, there’s also lots of opportunities to work in sustainability following a 4-year degree. Many universities have environmental sciences programs. Often, you can do a minor in these programs while doing a major in humanities or STEM. But that’s not your only option—I never studied the environment but still ended up running an EV charging company! Engineering or computer science is probably the clearest path toward working in clean tech, but there will be opportunities in sustainability whatever you study. Ultimately, “sustainability” is going to be synonymous with “business” by the time you enter the workforce. In the same way every company has become a technology company, almost every company will have a sustainability focus. So don’t worry too much and follow your interests. EVEN IF YOU HAVE NOT YET DRIVEN AN ELECTRIC VEHICLE, THE STATISTICS SHOW THAT YOU WILL The future of electric vehicle (EV) sales looks promising. Statistics suggest that electric vehicle sales will continue to grow at a rapid pace in the coming years as governments push for greener transportation options. Global electric vehicle sales are expected to increase from 2.5 million in 2020 to 31.1 million by 2030 (Bloomberg NEF). The European Commission says all new cars and vans registered in Europe will be zero-emission by 2035, And President Biden has set a goal of having 50% of all new vehicles sold in the USA be electric by 2030. As battery technology advances and charging infrastructure becomes more widespread, EVs will become more practical for everyday use. Many people worry about not finding a charging station and that their battery will run out before they reach their destination. ChargeLab wants to change this. In 2022, Forbes listed Zak LeFevre as one of 30 Under 30 in Energy.