Lane Community College (LCC) has been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to fund an Independent Learner Energy Education Design (iLEED) project led by LCC's Energy and Water Education Programs Coordinator, Roger Ebbage. Over the next 3 years, the $618,881 grant will focus on providing community college students with opportunities to learn about energy management through online classes, developing hands on skills with “real world” field projects and cultivating potential employment connections with Northwest public utilities mentors.
iLEED introduces a new method of career technical educational content delivery which enables energy efficiency education to be available for a wider population geographicly. It produces highly-qualified energy management technicians to our region’s commercial building sector and provides access to high-wage, high-skill jobs to students in rural areas, or students who are not able to attend “traditional” classes.
With this model of higher education / industry partnership, energy management students will be served regardless of their geographic location, work-schedule, or family obligations. This opens opportunities to student demographics that are currently unavailable in current classes and absent within the energy industry.
iLEED is more then just generating online courses and or an online degree option. The program is piloting a methodology for non-centrally located remote students to be able to accomplish technical hands on activities. These activities are guided by industry experts who can facilitate access to tools, mechanical equipment and/or tactile experiences. Additionally, they provide an invaluable direct student-to-industry connection that cultivates immersion into the industry along with potential employment opportunities.
The program is motivated by:
- The high demand for energy management workforce by industry
- The need for a novel education method which will expand technical education to a broader student population,
- Lane Community College’s expertise in energy management programs and experience delivering quality programs outside of the traditional campus environment.
"This is not just taking a program online, rather, we have the potential to revolutionize how career technical programs serve underserved populations. Utilizing proven online instructional methods and innovative partnerships, we expect to increase the Energy Management program’s enrollment and consequently that of Lane Community College."
– Energy/Water Education Programs Coordinator, Roger Ebbage.
The iLEED grant begins July 1, 2016 and is funded for three years.
Update Posted Thursday, June 2, 2016