In the Fall of 2020 I applied for an associate position with CleanStart, and a few weeks later I was interviewed and hired by the Executive Director, Thomas Hall, and Board Member, Mark Humbert, to begin working remotely due to COVID. I couldn’t have asked for a more supportive and knowledgeable team to work with. My experience allowed me to apply my classroom knowledge of accounting to a non-profit organization (a huge plus!) aimed to build knowledge, education, and the success of clean technologies. 

There is an incredible amount of knowledge of how finance is accelerating Cleantech. I was introduced to knowledge of financial structures required for an organization to run successfully. My tasks included bookkeeping, troubleshooting discrepancies to create accurate financial reports, researching cleantech topics, and writing content like my recent blog on  project finance. As I gained more confidence, I was asked to present our finances to the team during our weekly meetings. Now, I wasn’t much of a presenter or good public-speaker, but this internship pushed me to become a great one. It became a monthly thrill as I was able to present to our Founder, Gary Simon, along with the rest of our team. Another project I was able to work on was filing our taxes for the 2020 year. Having no prior experience in doing taxes, I was able to gain a better understanding through my one-on-one meetings and helped complete my first set of corporate taxes. 

My internship was supposed to be a 3-month internship, but I was lucky enough to work with this team for an entire year! This past year I saw our weekly team meetings were truly dedicated to our interns, some of which were set up as educational workshops on CleanTech. These were incredible opportunities to ask questions to our own experts about the industry, and steer the conversation through the ins and outs of CleanTech. So, where do I go from here? As a recent graduate from Sacramento State University, I plan to pursue a financial analyst career and continue my education by attending graduate school in the future. Thank you for making these career choices easier for a recent graduate like me. Thank you CleanStart, my teams, and my mentors. 

Thomas Hall


Nitza Jamias is currently a Senior at Sacramento State University graduating May 2021 with a Bachelor's in Business Administration and a minor in Political Science. Transferring from Santa Barbara City College in her hometown, she hopes to leverage her experience with CleanStart to achieve her aspiration of becoming a Financial Analyst while traveling as a military wife. Additionally, Nitza is concerned about sea-level rise and coastline erosion as she hopes to retire in California next to her husband on the paradise beaches she loves.

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College of Engineering & Computer Science at Sacramento State