Supporting community colleges in educating for and building a green economy
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Resource Center

Instructions

The Resource Center is a curated collection of information organized around 7 green economy “Sectors” and 7 “Topics.” In time, more Sectors will be added. Topics represent those areas in which educators and workforce development professionals continue to seek direction.

You can search by sector or by topic. Or across all sectors and/or all topics.

You can also perform a keyword search of all resources on the top right of this page.

Solar

The solar industry is expected to show steady growth over the coming decade largely due to rising energy prices, advances in technology through public/private partnerships and investments, and continued enactment of federal and state policies and financial incentives. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Wind

Wind power is considered a leading source of new electricity generation in the United States, with the potential of providing 20% of the nation’s energy needs by 2030. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Green Building

The green building market has expanded five fold over the last three years to a $48 billion national market—and is projected to triple in the next five years. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is considered the foundation of a vibrant and sustainable green economy, and one of the most cost effective ways to lower energy consumption, reduce operating costs, and mitigate carbon emissions. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Sustainability Education

Sustainability education refers generally to learning experiences that enable students to develop the knowledge, behaviors and skills to help create healthier ecosystems, social systems, and economies. For the purposes of the SEED Center, this includes resources to help build non-credit continuing education for the incumbent workforce and integrating sustainability curriculum into existing credit programs. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Sustainable Ag., Food & Land

The Sustainable Ag., Food & Land sector covers the areas of organic farming, horticulture, culinary art, and landscaping. This sector includes organizations and resources that integrate environmental, social and economic factors into land use, food preparation, and land specific practices in an attempt to create a more sustainable future. more >>

General Clean Tech

The General Clean Tech sector is a space for resources that encompass multiple ‘green’ sectors. Many are applicable to the broader clean economy and sustainability-related technology and will serve the general clean tech community. Resources also provide valuable information on sectors that are experiencing substantive development in the sustainability realm, like manufacturing and smart grid. more >>

Transportation and Fuels

The Transportation & Fuels sector covers the area of electric and hybrid vehicle development and maintenance, other forms of alternative and sustainable transportation, natural gas, fuel cells, battery storage, and renewable fuels sources including ethanol, biodiesel, algae, and methane. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Certifications and Industry Credentials

Certainly, one of the biggest challenges facing green educators is the rapid and mostly uncoordinated emergence of green certifications and credentials. more >>
 

Curricular Materials

These resources and materials have been vetted by industry and education experts, and while not in the form of specific educator tools, will assist in creating quality curricula for your classroom. more >>

You will find more specific educator tools (e.g. syllabi, lab manuals, lesson plans, special classroom projects, equipment lists, etc.) submitted by SEED member colleges in our Curricular Materials Sharing Portal.

Employment Industry Projections

While job training providers have been quite active in past years working with local industry to define the emerging green jobs market and potential job growth areas, most still struggle to forecast accurately regional occupational demand. The U.S. Department of Labor has made recent strides toward classifying green occupations and competencies which will help communities define and track green jobs (and colleges to design appropriate education and training programs). Given the uncertain renewable energy and efficiency industry outlook, and rapidly changing technologies, access to the most up-to-date industry studies and employment projections will be critical. more >>

Innovative Practices & Partnerships

The job creation potential of the green economy has led to some unique job training and economic development partnerships and collaborations. more >>

Professional Development Resources

This section includes promising facilitated learning opportunities, including “train the trainer” programs, standing conferences, and informal learning opportunities situated in practice for faculty and staff seeking to further their knowledge of industry trends and requirements. more >>

Policy & Funding Sources

Included you will find links and descriptions of agencies and organizations that typically fund sustainability and green job training initiatives as well as those that provide important information on national legislation and policies relevant to the clean energy sector. CHECK BACK AS MORE ARE ADDED. This section also highlights resources that provide guidance on how to supply input into program and grant design for certain agency solicitations. more >>

Skill sets, Competencies & Career Pathways

This section includes lists and assessments of skill sets and competencies tied to the green economy – across the broad industry as well as within specific sectors. It also includes some critical resources that colleges can use to align programs and facilitate student transitions. Included are green energy competency models and newly-developed career pathways that allow movement across educational and training programs. more >>

Sector: Topic:

Featured Resources

On January 27th, 2014, The Solar Foundation released its highly anticipated National Solar Jobs Census 2013, which found that the U.S. solar industry employed 142,698 Americans as of November 2013. This figure includes the addition of 23,682 solar workers over the previous year, representing 19.9 percent growth in employment since September 2012. During the period covered by the Census, solar employment grew 10 times faster than the national average employment rate of 1.9 percent. This growth rate is also significant in that it shows – for the first time ever – the solar industry exceeded the growth projections made in the previous year’s report.
Recognizing that much of the public funding for solar training programs has already expired - despite a profusion of studies pointing to increased worker demand - The Solar Foundation, along with SolarTech and the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), collaborated on this paper to introduce a number of possible funding mechanisms designed to attract both public and private capital and efficiently allocate funds to solar workforce programs with the greatest need. This paper supplements the broader efforts of the SolarTech Workforce Innovations Collaborative (SWIC), which was a market-driven pilot program that took a systems approach to source, train, and place the right people in the right jobs at the right time.
A new database of hundreds of campus solar photovoltaic installations designed for higher education solar advocates to browse success stories at campuses of a similar type, size and location.
The Best Practices documents, a compendium of national curriculum models of solar training, education and workforce development curriculum from The Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC), are available to help instructors enhance the quality of their existing solar education and training programs.
This publication was written for NABCEP by industry leading subject matter experts and teachers, Bill Brooks and Jim Dunlop. It follows the NABCEP Solar Heating Job Task Analysis and is a useful tool for candidates preparing for both the NABCEP PV Entry Level and the NABCEP PV Installer Certification exams. It is also intended for use as an instructional reference for educators.
This publication was written for NABCEP by industry leading subject matter experts and teachers, Vaughan Woodruff and Chuck Marken. It follows the NABCEP Solar Heating Job Task Analysis and is a useful tool for candidates preparing for both the NABCEP Solar Heating Entry Level and the NABCEP Solar Heating Installer Certification exams. It is also intended for use as an instructional reference for educators.
This document presents a comprehensive task analysis for contractors installing solar water and pool heating systems on buildings. For the purposes of developing training curricula, assessment mechanisms and certification criteria, specific tasks are classified as either cognitive or psychomotor skills.
This document presents an in-depth Job Task Analysis for solar electric professionals who gather site specific information and analyze customer needs and energy usage for the purpose of advising and providing customers with the most appropriate proposal for a solar photovoltaic (PV) system given their situation.
This document presents an in-depth task analysis for practitioners who specify, install and maintain solar photovoltaic (PV) power generation systems and equipment.
The NABCEP PV installer certification is a voluntary certification that provides a set of national standards by which PV installers with skills and experience can distinguish themselves from their competition. Certification provides a measure of protection to the public by giving them a credential for judging the competency of practitioners.
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More Resources

The Energy Foundation presents over 150 studies relating to green energy and jobs. In this website, search by your own criteria then click on a study’s title to access its summary and, when available, a link to the original text.
The Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) provides assistance to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to complete a variety of projects. Offering both loan guarantees and grants, the REAP program helps eligible applicants install renewable energy systems such as solar panels or anaerobic digesters, make energy efficiency improvements such as installing irrigation pumps or replacing ventilation systems, and conduct energy audits and feasibility studies.
The Solar Foundation (TSF) is working to demonstrate the global benefits of solar energy through research and education. They are increasing the widespread adoption of solar energy and transforming the marketplace through coordinated public education & outreach efforts, high-level data collection, and innovative research. TSF is the charitable research and education arm of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).
The Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research released the U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2011 Year-in-Review. According to the report, solar photovoltaic (PV) installations grew by 109 percent in 2011, reaching 1,855 megawatts (MW). Total PV capacity in the United States is now 3,954 MW, approximately seven percent of global installations.
This solar career map explores an expanding universe of solar-energy occupations, describing diverse jobs across the industry, charting possible progression between them, and identifying the high-quality training necessary to do them well. Developed by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council in its capacity as the National Administrator of DOE’s Solar Instructor Training Network, the tool is intended for use by instructors, policy-makers, and job-seekers.
Presented at the CCCAOE Fall 2011 Conference, this presentation incorporates data from solar and water studies. Also explored were results of a year-long examination of "green jobs" conducted in partnership with the EDD's Labor Market Information Division (LMID), which focused on identifying the impact of "green" in creating new tasks, skills, and knowledge areas for today's workforce. Economic & Workforce Development assistance was provided through the California Community Colleges and the presentation works to inform community colleges and the workforce community. It covers the industries that are driving growth in “green” employment and what “green” skills and knowledge employers are looking for. It provides a summary on where community colleges should invest resources and can be seen as an example of what regions can do to engage educational and employer institutions.
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This resource made possible with the generous support from the Kresge Foundation