Training Success Spotlight: Students & Professionals Earn Their Renewable Energy Technologies Diploma to Strengthen Their Skills
The NC Clean Energy Technology Center offers both online and in-person educational workshops covering the technical and financial side of clean energy through its NABCEP registered Training Program. The program is a logical extension of NCCETC’s expertise in the clean energy industry and is designed to help individuals get the training and credentials they need to launch their careers or support professionals seeking to integrate clean energy into their work.
The courses range from short, certificate classes such as the Certificate in Renewable Energy Management to the longer in-depth Renewable Energy Technologies Diploma Series. NCCETC recently released the training schedule for 2022, featuring courses where students can gain experience in renewable energy management, solar policy and finance, and the design and installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. The entire course schedule for the 2022 calendar year is available here.
Allison Carr, Senior Training Specialist at NCCETC, coordinates NCCETC’s Training Program to ensure courses correspond with the needs of the growing clean energy industry. “Our courses are intended to support anyone interested in working in the renewable energy industry,” Carr explained. Recent graduates hoping to learn the basics can benefit from courses such as REPV: Fundamentals of Photovoltaic Design and Installation while industry professionals can choose more advanced and technology-specific knowledge courses such as Solar Storage to gain the in-depth technical knowledge they need.
Setting the Stage
Jay Munsch is hoping to make a career move into the renewable energy industry, and the training courses at NCCETC helped him find his footing in the solar industry. Currently working as an electrical contractor, Munsch said, “Continuing education is key to any trade industry. As new methods and technology are developed, you want to be able to evaluate those things for yourself and understand if, when, and how they apply to your customers’ needs.”
Munsch recently earned his Renewable Energy Technologies Diploma, a continuing education diploma from the NCCETC. “I’d like to add inspection and maintenance of solar infrastructure to my repertoire of services,” he explained. “More immediately, I plan to take the associate exam with NABCEP, and these courses have well prepared me for that challenge.”
For individuals working in design, installation, maintenance, or another aspect of photovoltaics, NABCEP Board Certifications help them earn the qualifications they need for jobs in the solar industry. Munsch was able to tour an existing solar system through NCCETC’s Operations and Maintenance (O&M) of PV Systems, which is taught by certified PV professional David Del Vecchio.
Attending the in-person O&M course on NC State University’s campus was Munsch’s favorite part of his training. “Being able to engage with other like-minded people and then explore what new technologies are in development at NC State was exciting and inspiring,” he said.
Professionals Preparing for the Future
Scott Wallace, Energy Management Advisor for Southside Electric Cooperative, also earned his Renewable Energy Technologies Diploma through NCCETC. Wallace decided to take training courses after seeing an increase in demand for residential solar and battery storage.
“I do a lot of site inspections and I wanted to be able to locate and correct safety issues,” Wallace said. “Now, I can pass along what I learned to my work colleagues so they can accurately answer and understand questions they get about renewable energy.”
After taking online courses during the COVID-19 pandemic, Wallace was excited to gain hands-on experience once in-person classes resumed. “The instructor David Del Vecchio was very energetic and compassionate about the solar industry,” noted Wallace. “He was able to pass along years of experience during his teaching.”
With more renewable energy projects being brought onto the grid, there is a greater need for technicians and professionals capable of maintaining safe and reliable systems. “If you’re interested in learning more about the clean energy industry and technologies, now is the time to register and advance your career,” Carr said.
Continuing education courses and educational seminars are vital in a rapidly changing industry like clean energy. A skilled and educated workforce can lead the way towards developing a sustainable and energy efficient industry in North Carolina and beyond. See the NCCETC’s training calendar online to find the path for you!