T&D World Magazine

Solar Energy Initiatives Partners with Jacksonville Job Programs to Train Displaced Workers for Solar Industry

Solar Energy Initiatives, Inc. has announced a partnership with three Jacksonville job training and placement agencies to train displaced workers as solar energy installation and maintenance technicians.

This new partnership is a first step in Solar Energy’s Renew the Nation campaign intended to promote job growth and economic development nationwide by providing a trained workforce to enter the fast-growing renewable energy industry. The program, pending final approval by the Jacksonville City Council, is being funded in part by $396,000 in federal stimulus dollars provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Joining Solar Energy in this job training collaborative is Community Rehabilitation Center (CRC), Northeast Community Action Agency (NFCAA) and WorkSource. Solar Energy is providing the training curriculum and materials, while CRC will manage the program and NFCAA and WorkSource will supply the trainees.

The training facility, to be called CRC Institute, will be located at Pearl Plaza at the corner of North Pearl and 44th streets. The first class is anticipated to begin in late October.

Solar Energy’s business model focuses on three fronts:

  • Solar Parks. Development of large utility-scale photovoltaic (PV) installations bringing together landowners, utilities and corporate resources to build and operate.
  • Solar Power Purchase Agreements (SPPA). Placing solar systems on or adjacent to commercial or municipal buildings and selling the energy output to the owner(s).
  • Solar Dealers. One of the fastest growing independent dealer networks that sells and installs solar systems to homeowners and commercial customers.

Last week Solar Energy announced Letters of Intent for $17 million in commercial Projects that will use approximately 20,000 solar panels producing up to 4 megawatts of solar electricity and projected to reduce hazardous carbon dioxide emissions by 6,000 tons, annually. Solar Energy also recently completed training its 78th solar dealer and signed a contract securing land for the development of a 300 megawatt solar park in west Texas.

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