Christopher Mihm MS ’06 Gives Back to Students and the Planet
Christopher Mihm MS ’06, is a leader and a mentor. His company, Futuro Azul, provides companies with renewable energy solutions like solar power. His knowledge in economics and business combined with his passion for sustainability allows Mihm to do what he loves while making a difference. Mihm wanted to give back to his alma mater in a meaningful way, so he became a mentor on NetworkUSF.
After completing a bachelor’s degree in economics with a minor in philosophy, Mihm decided to pursue a master’s in science at USF in the environmental management program. From there, Mihm moved to Sri Lanka, where he was able to use his economics background and his education at USF to begin networking with people in renewable energy. Mihm found a passion for sustainability and now has a direct impact on the reduction of fossil fuels and toxic emissions. His work changes the way that people think.
Intersecting Economics and Sustainability
With a bachelor's degree in economics, Mihm wanted to apply his knowledge into something he cared about. After taking an environmental economics class, he was inspired to pursue his masters in environmental management at USF. While at USF, Mihm learned how to network and make important connections that guided his professional future, while still having space to grow and find his own path.
“It's not a rigid educational program — I was really being propelled into the environmental and sustainability field, so much so that I was embraced by the business school," said Mihm.
Mihm has been able to successfully support businesses across Latin America, as well as multinational corporations, adopt sustainable energy practices. Mihm stresses the importance of selling solar energy and other sustainable practices at an economic benefit, so businesses have an economic incentive to be sustainable. This way the adoption of renewable energy accelerates.
Giving Back in More Ways than One
When Mihm got the email with the opportunity to be a mentor on NetworkUSF, he put all his energy into becoming one. Since becoming a mentor Mihm says he often receives messages from his mentees saying, “Hey, guess what? Good news.” Mihm was shocked to find how much he, as a mentor, would get out of the program. “I'd have weekly meetings with each one of my mentees, and we’d both say, we didn't expect it to be this productive, and I didn't expect to get so much out of it myself.”
Mihm had a mentor himself, former USF professor Jamie Fine, who helped Mihm obtain his first consulting job with the Environmental Defense Fund. “He changed my life — he changed my world from USF and put me on a trajectory that I could have never imagined,” said Mihm.
Mihm is not only making a positive impact in the world, but he is doing what he loves. “Do what you think is going to inspire you to work hard every day, not the first year out of college, but in 10 years, what's gonna put a smile on your face?”
Want to learn more about becoming a mentor or mentee?