Governor’s Workforce Investment Board Announces Launch of a New Solar Energy Green Jobs Training Program in Anne Arundel County


Monday, August 23, 2010: The Governor’s Workforce Investment Board (GWIB), a division of the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, announces the launch of Go Solar!, a new solar energy training program made possible through a $5.8M Recovery Act grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. Go Solar!, an collaboration between GWIB, Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation, Anne Arundel Community College, and the Independent Electrical Contractors-Chesapeake (IEC), will provide entry-level workers with required skills to ensure success in the expanding green economy.

The training, which begins today, will run for 14 weeks, with sessions held at IEC’s training facility in Odenton. The class will develop basic skills and understanding of electrical and mechanical solar photovoltaic (PV) array design and components, as well as good safety practices. Completion of this program will prepare workers for the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Solar PV Installer Certification examination, for placement in an electrical apprenticeship, and for employment in the solar PV industry or other green/renewable energy opportunities. The Go Solar! program is consistent with Governor Martin O’Malley’s Skills2Compete initiative and its goal of increasing Maryland’s skilled workforce by 20% by 2012. More information is available on the GWIB website.

“In Maryland we have set a goal of creating at least 100,000 green jobs by 2015, and we are working across our State – along with partners in business, community colleges, One Stop career centers, and trade associations – to train our next generation of workers to meet the growing workforce needs in the solar industry,” Governor O’Malley said. “This project implemented in Anne Arundel County kicks off our effort to train over 1,500 Marylanders with the skills to compete in new and growing jobs in Maryland and provides more Marylanders with the skills they need to succeed.”

The Maryland Energy Sector Partnership (MESP), led by GWIB, monitors four regional consortia that will promote skill attainment and career pathway development in green jobs in the fields of manufacturing, construction, environment technology and solar energy for more than 1,500 Marylanders. One of the consortia is the Go Solar! Group. The solar energy sector has seen an average annual growth of 25% over the past 10 years, and skilled installers are in high demand. For more information about MESP, visit the GWIB website.

“Green industry is the future,” said Kirkland J. Murray, President and CEO of Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation. “This training will give Marylanders the edge they need to compete in the high growth field of solar energy, and is a major step towards reaching our goal of getting our citizens back to work.”

For more information, contact the Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation at 410-987-3890 or greenjobs@aawdc.org.