Students are flocking to green jobs training programs in hopes of capitalizing on the anticipated demand for alternative fuels and energy efficiency. This job market could produce from 5 million jobs upwards to 37 million by some estimates. Technical college students are learning about everything from biofuels and fuel cells, while learning the green skills needed for traditional jobs like electricians, metal workers and environmental scientists.
The most promising technologies appear to be in the wind power development, solar power manufacturing, fuel cells and biofuels. Those in building and construction trades will find themselves governed by green building code requirements. This is where “greening the American dream” first got the grass roots nickname. These green homes will be more energy efficient and feature systems that most people have barely heard of.
Green jobs training programs are being offered by many colleges and universities in 2 and 4 year degree programs. Some of the courses offered at technical schools are certification courses that don’t take as long. Many of these are appearing at Dream Green Job Fairs, where they can spread the word to college students regarding these promising careers that will require specialized training, which is not part of the conventional curriculum.
Because the stimulus bill offered $500 million in educational assistance to those that want to take the green educational programs, many have taken advantage, but there is still money available. Consider that many states have received additional funding to offer the programs in their state and you can see there is help available for those that are interested in green jobs training to be competitive in this growing occupational field.
The Green Jobs Act has given authority to the ETA or Employment and Training Administration of the U.S. Labor Department. They havelaid fundamental training requirements based on the needs expressed by the companies that intend to employ these future green collar workers. Many of the students that are in the process of getting degrees in certain green areas that are specialized have received multiple employment offers before they even complete their courses.
It’s this anticipated need that the government is hoping will turn the economy around, re-train the unemployed, including the specialized fields that have seen drastic cuts, such as automobile factory workers. With government funding, some of these students are receiving 100% paid training in green jobs, which includes books and tuitions.
Even the students that are in traditional degree courses for engineering, electricians, mechanical, project management, applied sciences and other offshoots, such as interior design are finding green curriculum has been added to their coursework.
Many of the States have formed commissions to start implementing the green career thinking to elementary and high school students, in hopes of recruiting the future generation of green workers. Because this is a trend that is expected to increase in demand on a global scale, officials and companies are concerned about the lack of skilled workers to pull the initiative off.
Most of the students are concerned about finding jobs in a bad economy and it doesn’t take much convincing to get them to consider green jobs training as the key to their future with higher paying jobs in a growing market with more job stability than their parents had.