MREA Helps Iowa Workers Prepare for Solar Careers
(Dubuque, Iowa) – Statewide, Iowa saw a 44% increase in solar jobs in 2017. Demand remains steady for solar workers in Iowa, where worker skill levels range from material handlers to sales experience to electricians and professional engineers. Successful candidates for solar job openings have often pursued solar technical training to complement their existing skill sets.
Accredited organizations like the Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA) have been providing solar-technical training throughout the Midwest since 1990. The MREA maintains Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) accreditation for its solar courses, and in 2018 over 1,100 students participated in MREA training programs.
Beginning January 26th, MREA will offer its 48-hour Solar Training Academy in Dubuque, IA. Mike Joyce, Project Manager for Full Spectrum Solar in Madison, WI, will lead six days of training over three weekends. The Academy includes a progression of solar courses including Basic Photovoltaics (PV), PV Site Assessment and PV System Design. The Academy wraps up with PV Labs and Design Scenarios and a day of review. Upon completion students qualify to sit for the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) PV Associate Exam, an increasingly sought-after solar industry credential.
The Academy is open to workers of all skill levels, with no prerequisites or prior solar training required. Weekend sessions are designed to fit the busy schedules of working students. Jim Northey, School of Business and Economics teacher at Michigan Technological University (MTU), and MREA alum, describes MREA’s Solar Training Academy as “…an incredible educational value. Anyone interested in an energy independent future and a shift into a rewarding career should enroll in this program.”
Patrick Laughlin received multiple job offers after completing the 2017 Solar Training Academy in Normal, IL. Patrick accepted a job with Namaste’ Solar in Denver, Colorado and says “For the first time in my life, I am doing something rewarding, and it feels great. [Everything] we learned during the course I have seen implemented, and the knowledge has given me a leg up on really applying myself to the job.”
2019 Iowa Solar Training Academy Details:
Instructor: Mike Joyce, Full Spectrum Solar
- Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, 700 Locust Street #195, Dubuque, IA 52001
- Eagle Point Solar, 900 Jackson Street #108, Dubuque, IA 52001 (Lab Day)
- 1/26/19 – 1/27/19
- 2/23/19 – 2/24/19
- 3/16/19 – 3/17/19
- 3/23/19 (Exam Day)
The Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational organization. Founded in 1990, the MREA promotes renewable energy and sustainable living through education and demonstration and hosts The Energy Fair each June. To learn more, call 715-592-6595 or visit www.midwestrenew.org