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In this issue | August 2014
IREC Certified Master Trainer, Michael Paradis, 
on the road in Kennebec Valley Community College's van  to train solar trainers from KVCC's partnership institutions. We'll feature Michael and his work in the September issue of 
the Credentialing Chronicle.

 

 

 

 























FEATURE COLUMN

by Laure-Jeanne Davignon, IREC Credentialing Program Director

LJ

 

But are there jobs?

Positioning the clean energy workforce to close the skills gap


 

In a recent news release, the National Association of Counties (NACo) cited the workforce skills gap as THE top barrier to economic development in the U.S. With the national unemployment rate still hovering over 6 percent (and much higher in some areas), this is a sobering observation. NACo's release focuses on collaboration as a key to this conundrum, and IREC couldn't agree more.

 

IREC standards and credentials stress the importance of the marriage between 'town and gown.' In other words, the needs of 'local' business (how local depends on your market) should be wedded to your workforce training programs. IREC credential holders involve industry in all phases of training program development and implementation, and have assurances in place, including valid student testing, to guarantee that graduates are equipped with current and relevant competencies to fill needed jobs.

 

Also in July, Vice President Joe Biden released his report, Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity. In it, he called for training programs to be more 'job-driven,' and stated that, "hiring based on industry-recognized credentials reduces search costs and raises productivity for employers." These are strong statements supporting what IREC and our credential holders have recognized for some time.

 

In the sage words of our colleague, Dr. Sarah White, "The U.S. cannot build a clean energy industry to scale in the absence of some scheme for assuring the quality of its products and services, which includes measuring and documenting the quality of workers and the institutions that train them."

 

High quality, job-focused training is a pillar of the clean energy industry and a crucial contributor to healthy and continued growth. IREC credentials provide a mark that employers and other stakeholders can leverage to reduce their time spent training and guarantee good workmanship, both contibutors to profitability. 

 

IREC is in the trenches at conferences and other venues nationwide ensuring that industry understands this link, and that they increasingly seek graduates of accredited training programs, and hire certified instructors to perform in-house training.

 

Closing the skills gap will take all kinds of smart collaboration: between business and education, credentialing bodies and employers, students and training organizations, and the list goes on. IREC credential holders are already doing their part by listening to industry needs and matching workforce programs to jobs that desperately need skilled workers. 

 

Thank you for your continued collaboration as we work to ensure excellence for our industry. 

EVENTS
  
2-3p ET

Aspen, CO

9/28 | EESCC Global Web Call for Phase 2 Activities
To register: email eescc@ansi.org

  

OCT
2-3pET
 
Las Vegas, NV

10/21-23 |
IREC 3iForum
Solar Power International
Las Vegas, NV
Solar Power International
Las Vegas, NV  

 

Visit IREC's online calendar for more events.

Public Registry For IREC Credential Holders
Looking for IREC credential holders in an easy-to-search format? Check out the IREC Credentialing Program's public registry of credential holders, which ensures that accurate, current information is viewable by employers, funders and others.  More
Calling All Clean Energy Training Providers: Get Listed in the IREC Training Directory!
IREC maintains a listing for credential holders exclusively in our online Public RegistryThe Clean Energy Training Directory, accessed by students, employers and other stakeholders, is populated and maintained by each training organization listed, so check to make sure your organization is included today. More

Ready to apply for the IREC Credential? Did you know you can use IREC's Credentialing Management System (CMS)? The latest CMS Reference Guide will help you understand the process. The CMS is also the portal to update personal information, upload supporting documents, check your progress and more. More

Of note...
EESCC Offers Global Web Call For Phase 2 Activities 

Following the successful release of the Standardization Roadmap: Energy Efficiency in the Built Environment, the ANSI Energy Efficiency Standardization Coordination Collaborative (EESCC) will host a web call on August 28 to discuss and begin action on the collaborative's next phase of activities. 

IREC President and CEO Jane Weissman co-chaired the EESCC expert workgroup on workforce credentialing, which made 16 overarching recommendations to advance workforce credentialing in the energy efficiency field.

The call is also open to individuals and organizations interested in learning more about the EESCC and becoming involved in phase two. To register, emaileescc@ansi.org with the subject line "August 28 EESCC web call" by Noon ET August 26. 

 

Still wondering how credentials matter? How they're being leveraged? The CECC has posted a series of case studies that demonstrate the value of credentialing, for education/training programs and instructors, prospective students, employers and ultimately consumers.  

 

The CECC represents a group of well-established, nationally accredited credentialing organizations united in their commitment to clean energy quality, safety and efficiency. The coalition encourages consumers, employers, energy incentive programs and other stakeholders to look for quality credentials as a distinguishing mark among the growing number of renewable energy and energy efficiency professionals, products, trainers and training programs. IREC is a proud founding member. To learn more, visit www.cleanenergycredentials.org


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The IREC Credentialing Program lays the foundation for a competent workforce for the clean energy economy. Using robust standards and a detailed process of application and assessment, IREC drives quality workforce training and increased consumer confidence in the industry.  
 
About IREC
The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) is a non-profit organization that believes clean energy is critical to achieving a sustainable and economically strong future. To pave this clean energy path, IREC works to expand consumer access to clean energy; generates information and objective analysis grounded in best practices and standards; and leads programs to build a quality clean energy workforce, including a unique credentialing program for renewable energy and energy efficiency training providers and instructors. Since 1982, IREC's programs and policies have benefitted energy consumers, policymakers, utilities and the clean energy industry. As of July 2013, IREC is an accredited American National Standards Developer.

Disclaimer 
The Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) does not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product or process that is referred to or linked to in this newsletter. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply IREC's endorsement or recommendation. 
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