Collaboration and Partnership through the Better Buildings Workforce Accelerator
Almost 40 organizations are partnering with DOE as part of the Better Buildings Workforce Accelerator with a commitment to enhancing the energy efficiency workforce by cultivating interest, facilitating pathways, and improving skills. These organizations are catalyzing a workforce that is well-equipped for the transition to a higher-performing U.S. building stock. Over the past year, the accelerator has seen considerable progress, including two new workforce programs launched, 95 trained offerings, 21,000 training participants served, and 460,000 people reached through webinars and virtual meetups.
DOE and accelerator partners meet quarterly. At the latest meeting in December, the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC), Northwest Energy Efficiency Council (NEEC), and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) offered updates on their workforce activities.
Interstate Renewable Energy Council
In partnership with the National Council for Workforce Education, IREC has launched the National Clean Energy Workforce Alliance, which is a cross-sector effort uniting all clean energy workforce stakeholders. The alliance seeks to establish a National Clean Energy Workforce Plan with programs that provide insight into workforce gaps and strategic stakeholder engagement. The program also facilitates information sharing and aims to eliminate duplicative efforts.
Northwest Energy Efficiency Council
The Northwest Energy Efficiency Council presented the Buildings Operations Certification program for individuals who are exploring a career in facilities management, building operations, and energy efficiency. The curriculum teaches general awareness of facilities, strengthens building optimization skills, helps students identify areas for energy saving, and encourages energy-smart decision making in day-to-day tasks.
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
NREL launched JUMP into STEM, a program that strives to inspire the next generation of building scientists with a focus on creative ideation and diversity. This program welcomes undergraduate and graduate students in all fields to participate in the JUMP Student competition. Winners are offered mentorship and paid internships at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
Stay up to date on the Workforce Accelerator’s progress by visiting the Workforce Accelerator page. Watch this recent webinar to learn more about the accelerator and hear from the City of Milwaukee, IREC, and Lane Community College.
For more workforce development resources and information, visit the Better Buildings Workforce Development Portal.