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Portrait

Laurie-Mai DENOUX - STU class of 2010

Posted on | Alumni Portrait
Portrait by Fanny Rahmouni on September 11, 2014

Laurie-Mai is a former student of the Master Stratégies Territoriales et Urbaines and is now in charge of supporting local authorities in the definition and financing of projects on the theme of sustainable cities within the Nantes-Saint Nazaire metropolitan cluster.

At the end of her first year of the Master's program, Laurie-Mai started looking for a summer internship. She naturally headed for Nantes, where she was originally from, and got in touch with the Nantes Saint-Nazaire metropolitan structure[1]. The advice of a Master's teacher, Gilles Pinson, helped her to identify this entity as one of the most promising structures in the Nantes agglomeration. This first approach was not immediately conclusive: the metropolitan structure did not need an intern during this period, and Laurie-Mai finally decided to do her internship at the Gigaro think tank on sustainable city issues. However, it would prove to be decisive a few months later, when it came time to land a final internship.

In the fall, Laurie-Mai contacted the metropolitan structure for her M2 internship. Several points worked in her favor, starting with a good relationship with her contact within the organization. Laurie-Mai's profile corresponds to the expectations of the structure, and her collective project on the maritime and river sector in the Paris basin gives her CV a "coloring" that hits the mark with her contacts: in 2010, Laurie-Mai is taken on as an intern for 6 months within the team of SAMOA (Société d'Aménagement de la Métropole Ouest Atlantique) made available to the Nantes Saint-Nazaire metropolitan structure.

SAMOA is in charge of assisting the metropolitan structure in the implementation of the Ecocity approach, a national label that rewards communities engaged in a sustainable urban development policy. Laurie-Mai's internship is focused on the animation of a chain of innovative projects on the theme of "the return of cities to water". To do this, she identified and met several dozen project leaders, and thus acquired a solid knowledge of the metropolitan area.

Hired at the end of her internship, Laurie-Mai is continuing this work of project support: putting together an application to obtain funding for innovative projects such as the implementation of experimental ticketing in public transport in the Nantes metropolis, a water treatment project, and the design of a positive energy block in the Prairie-au-Duc eco-neighborhood on the Ile de Nantes. His position allows him to alternate between strategic subjects (definition of a metropolitan sustainable development strategy) and operational subjects (definition of specifications, analysis of files, including their technical aspects). Another strong point is that the small size of the structure ensures a wide range of missions and allows him to be in charge of each of the files.

The year 2012 saw the creation of the Nantes Saint-Nazaire Metropolitan Cluster. The latter integrates the dedicated team of the SAMOA to which Laurie-Mai belongs. She then became a contractual civil servant[2]. Her missions remain unchanged. Laurie-Mai is currently working on a project management consultation for the development of six landscaped sites of the Metropolitan Pole, called "Water and Landscapes". This is a large-scale project, since it is the first action of metropolitan interest undertaken by the Pôle since its creation.

In conclusion, a few recommendations to students: start looking for internships and making contacts early on, know how to activate the resources provided by the Master's professors, and initially aim for fairly generalist structures with different levels of operationality to vary the pleasures. Finally, don't hesitate to turn to the provinces where it is sometimes easier to take on more responsibility: as far as I am concerned, Laurie-Mai assures us, "I have no regrets, it was a success.


[1] The creation of the Nantes Saint-Nazaire metropolitan structure followed the adoption of the Nantes Saint-Nazaire Scot in 2007. In July 2012, it was transformed into the Nantes-Saint Nazaire Metropolitan Cluster, a new form of mixed intermunicipal cooperation union.

[2] For reasons of political choice and legal set-up, it is the Communauté d'agglomération de la région nazairienne et de l'estuaire (CARENE) which provides the staff of the Nantes-Saint Nazaire Metropolitan Cluster.


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