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Rowan College at Burlington County prepares vets for careers in solar energy through free training program

Solar panel

The Solar Ready Vets program at Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC), developed by the U.S. Department of Energy, offers eligible veterans free career training in the solar energy industry.

Military members transitioning out of the service and honorably discharged veterans are eligible to participate in the program starting Monday, Nov. 28 at RCBC’s Pemberton campus.

“The Solar Ready Vets program at Rowan College at Burlington County is accomplishing two very important goals. One, we are helping our veterans secure gainful employment through relevant, hands-on training. Secondly, we are meeting the demand for skilled workers in the solar energy industry,” said Anna Payanzo Cotton, RCBC Vice President of Workforce Development and Lifelong Learning.

According to The Solar Foundation, New Jersey is one of the top 20 solar job states. In addition, since the organization since began tracking the solar energy workforce in 2010, the industry has grown by 123 percent, resulting in nearly 115,000 new domestic jobs.

“Thanks to the technical training, discipline, and work ethic veterans acquired in the service, they are uniquely qualified to meet the skills demanded in the solar energy industry,” said Burlington County Freeholder Ryan Peters, a former Navy SEAL and current Lieutenant Commander in the Naval Reserve. “This program provides veterans with the opportunity to build upon their skill set and prepares them for employment in a growing industry as they return to civilian life.” 

The six-week Solar Ready Vets program prepares participants for the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners Entry Level Exam and solar-related jobs like photovoltaic (PV) system installers, sales representatives, and system inspectors.

The first training session runs Mondays through Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Nov. 28 to Jan. 12 at the college’s Pemberton campus. There will be three additional training sessions starting spring 2017.

Veterans interested in a job in solar energy are encouraged to apply as soon as possible at gomdl.com/solar-ready-vets.

Veterans seeking more information on the program and application, may contact Jude Marranco, Chief of Air Force Education and Training, 87th Force Support Squadron at the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, at 609-754-5345.