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A New Jersey college is taking some initiative to help give unemployed workers real shots at landing energy jobs. Burlington County College received a substantial grant–$306,265–to put together a tuition free technology training and certification program for green energy jobs.
The grant came from the state’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development, in cooperation with the Energy Sector Partnership. The resulting program will enable students to earn a Building Performance Institute residential certification. The BPI is one of the country’s top organizations for developing standards and issuing credentials for technicians performing energy-efficiency residential retrofits. They also provide quality-assurance services. Their certification is recognized across the industry.
A few of the certifications students can earn include weatherization technician and energy auditor. All of the certifications are in high demand as homes and businesses turn to contractors to help them save energy and reduce their environmental footprint. New Jersey is an especially green state. Their level of solar development comes in second only to California. Clean energy jobs shouldn’t be hard to come by there.
A big obstacle for those seeking clean energy jobs is that many positions require certifications that may take several years of study to obtain. While investing time and money in the future is certainly advisable, it won’t help those looking for work immediately. BCC’s program aims to fill that gap.
Max Slusher with BCC said, “We’re committed to working with the business community and the citizens in the county to expand opportunities. The unemployed are our first priority with this program.”
BCC’s program will take about 144 hours to complete, and will include hands-on training, written evaluations and even job placement assistance. It will run from August 20 through October 30.
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