Renewable Energy is a new and exciting field. Problem is, there is a general lack of formal training options for those looking to get into the business.
If you have decided upon a career in this sector you may familiarize yourself with available courses at Community Colleges that have similar, related trades training.
Alternative energy technologies generally build upon existing trades. For instance, if you wish to install solar-electric systems, you need to be an electrician; solar hot water, plumber.
For the most part, Canada lags behind the rest of the world in terms of training options for renewable energy. Most of us who have been in the industry for a while are self-taught. There are many other institutions that will be offering training programs in the very near future. We are only listing active training options on this list.
Sustainable Energy Association
BCIT offers two courses - Introduction to Photovoltaics, level 1 and 2. These courses are offered periodically as either an evening course, or a weekend intensive.
Seneca College, in partnership with CanSIA, offers an eleven-part training program for people who want to become professionally trained in the design and installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems.
The program provides a comprehensive understanding of related electric theory and the fundamentals of PV systems. By a combination of individualized distance learning and in-class study, students will learn the theory and practice required to use and install a solar electric system. The approximate cost for each subject is $395 plus materials.
Solar Energy International
NABCEP - North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners
The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP)
Consistent with this mission NABCEP is working to develop national, credentialing and certifications for renewable energy professionals. NABCEP began that work by creating a certification program for solar electric installers referred to as the Solar PV Installer Certification.
Florida Solar Energy
The Florida Solar Energy Center, a research institute of the State University System of Florida, currently offers ongoing courses for continuing education units and many are approved for Florida professional license renewals. One and two-day courses are offered on such subjects as photovoltaics, solar water heating, home energy rating certification, energy-efficient building strategies, and more. See their list of PV and distributed generation training programs.
Energy Association (MREA)
Cape Cod Community
Cape Cod Community College is establishing a broad-based Renewable Energy education and training program in collaboration with Mass Maritime Academy, U Mass/Dartmouth and two technical high schools, the Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School and Cape Cod Technical School.
GLREA offers professional training for photovoltaic system integrators
This is a two-year associate of applied science degree program with a
Renewable Energy Technician Option. Offered by the Science Department.
The North Carolina Solar Center serves as a clearinghouse for solar and
other renewable energy programs, information, research, technical assistance,
and training. The Center offers workshops on passive solar design and
construction, photovoltaic system design and installation and other related
courses. They are also offering a new Renewable Energy Diploma.
The renewable energy program at San Juan College gives the student a
foundation in the fundamental physics and design/installation techniques
required to work with renewable technologies. The concentration in Photovoltaic
System Design and Installation is offered as an associate of applied science
degree or a one-year certificate.
The Institute provides one- to nine-day workshops on renewable energy,
green building, sustainable living, ecological design and alternative
The Institute of Energy Conversion at the University of Delaware is a
multi-disciplinary laboratory devoted to research and development of thin-film
photovoltaic cells. IEC's research program is complemented by an educational
mission that enables both undergraduate and graduate students to obtain
degrees while working with professionals engaged in solar cell research.
The Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (CEERE) provides technological and economic solutions to environmental problems resulting from energy production, industrial, manufacturing, and commercial activities, and land use practices.
UMASS-Lowell offers a Master of Science in Energy Engineering program
with a Solar Energy Option.
The Alternative Energy Institutes primary emphasis has been placed on wind energy, though certain research and education are also on solar energy. AEI personnel have developed two introductory courses, one for wind energy and one for solar energy.
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