Moving continents to chase opportunities in Calgary

Amir Greiss, a University of Calgary alumnus and Business Development Engineer in Training with Process Ecology, shares his journey transitioning from student to professional in Calgary’s fast-growing energy industry.

Life in Calgary Students Amir Greiss

Calgary is a city where everyone is able to build a meaningful life. It is also a welcoming city for young talent, with many coming from around the world to pursue their academic dreams and build a successful career. 

We sat down with Amir Greiss, a University of Calgary alumnus and Business Development Engineer in Training with Process Ecology, to learn about his journey from student to professional in Calgary’s fast-growing energy industry. 



Why did you choose to study in Calgary?  

University of Calgary has a great Chemical Engineering program, so it was an easy decision to pursue a bachelor’s degree with a specialization in energy and environment. I was also drawn to Calgary because the city is also known as a booming market full of opportunities for engineers -- whether it’s a unique startup or an established engineering firm.  

I knew that University of Calgary would give me the best opportunity to enter the market because I’d always wanted to combine skills in chemical engineering with sustainability goals and process improvements. 

How would you describe your post-secondary experience in Calgary?  

In 2014, I moved from Cairo, Egypt to start my degree in Calgary. It’s never an easy decision to leave your comfort zone, friends, and family and move to a whole new continent but I’m glad I did it.  

The University of Calgary has a well-developed Engineering program and provides strong support for students through its advisory services. Through connections I made at the university, I was given the opportunity to attend conferences to enhance my knowledge and pursue a 16-month internship opportunity through the Co-op program, where I got a taste of work responsibilities.  

I graduated in 2019. By the time I was looking for my next challenge following graduation, the pandemic hit so the job market – around the world – was a bit challenging. Ultimately, I was able to land my first post-graduation job around March 2020 because of the opportunities that were available to me in Calgary! 

What type of work experience have you had in Calgary?  

I had various experiences in Calgary whether that was technical or business. Currently, I’m a Business Development Engineer-in-Training at Process Ecology, an Engineering services and strategic decision support company that helps companies in the energy industry manage their emissions and achieve their sustainability goals. 

I get to work with my clients on their emissions management and sustainability goals which makes me proud to know that I am making a difference regarding having a more sustainable future.  

How would you describe the opportunities within the energy industry in Calgary?  

I think Canada has one of the most responsible and sustainable operations around the globe when it comes to energy production. The industry may have its challenges, but it is growing especially in emissions management and sustainability, and Calgary is a good place to be to experience that growth. 

There is lots of potential for new minds to join us and change the way we think about sustainable energy and prepare for the future. The renewable industry is on a growth trajectory in Calgary, and it’s an exciting time to be involved.  

What are your career goals and how is Calgary helping you achieve them?  

I have been considering getting an MBA in a few years to take my career to the next level in the fields of strategy and business management. Calgary is filled with potential and diversified industries, so I believe there are lots of opportunities for my career. 

What are your favourite things about studying, working and living in Calgary?  

The quality of life in Calgary makes the city stand out. I think Calgary is safe, clean and has lots of activities. I love spending time in Banff in the summer and continuing to explore the province. I have also been getting more into the sporting scene and I really enjoy watching the Calgary Flames and Cavalry FC. 

Also, Calgarians are very nice and supportive – the community is very friendly, and the population is diverse.  

Ready to see what it's like to live, work and play in Calgary?