SOLARPRO | December/January 2009 By Lisa Cohn and Elisa Wood, with Charles Thurston
Community and junior colleges have stepped up to train workers for the emerging green-collar economy. Solar companies partner with colleges to help them develop curriculum materials and design programs, particularly for solar installers—then they recruit their graduates. “The community college system is an excellent way for employers to find well-qualified applicants. Part of the reason is that we’re so connected to the industry,” says John Carrese, director of the San Francisco Bay Center of Excellence, hosted at City College of San Francisco.
Lane Community College in Eugene, Oregon, for instance, offers an Energy Management Technician degree with an optional emphasis on renewable energy. The rigorous 100-credit program is housed in the Science Division and is ISPQ accredited by the Institute of Sustainable Power. Program Coordinator Roger Ebbage says the program began in September 2003 and has seen this year’s enrollment nearly triple the first year’s.
Oregon Built Environment & Sustainable Technologies Center - oregonbest.org
...Oregon leads the nation in recruiting and supporting solar energy companies that have open access to our university network of cutting-edge solar research facilities and world-renowned faculty researchers.
In addition, Oregon’s colleges and universities are educating new graduates who are highly trained in solar energy technologies and have hands-on experience in solar research labs. These men and women are ready to meet the growing workforce needs of Oregon’s booming solar energy sector...
Renewable Energy Technician Program awarded ISPQ Accreditation
The Interstate Renewable Energy Council is pleased to announce that the Lane Community College Renewable Energy Technician Program has been awarded the ISPQ Accreditation credential.” - July 31, 2007 More Info
Finding a future - and a calling - in solar electricity
By Barbara Grady STAFFWRITER InsideBayArea.com Article Created: 04/11/2008 11:58:38 AM PDT
Mark Hilsabeck (NEEI renewable energy technician graduate) climbs a ladder to the roof of a home in Berkeley more than a dozen times in a morning, sometimes carrying solar panels weighing 30 pounds each, other times tools and electrical equipment.
"We are planning on adding 200 workers in the next two years," Rive said. His company has been growing rapidly since its founding in July 2006. It has already hired 210 people.