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Hudson Valley Community College's Workforce Development Institute Announces Solar Job Training Initiative



Hudson Valley Community College Workforce Development Institute was the recipient of an $25,000 investment to strengthen New York’s energy workforce and growth the State’s clean energy economy.

The initiative, which includes a $25,000 investment by Cypress Creek, will help reduce course fees for students interested in solar job training, with a focus on recruiting more women, veterans, and underrepresented communities to the industry.

Cypress Creek Renewables also announced today a plan to invest over $500 million to develop and build 750 MW of solar in the Empire State. Together, these projects will create over 1,500 local construction jobs and power more than 80,000 homes with clean, affordable energy.

“We are deeply committed to bringing low-cost, clean energy to New York and we need a skilled, local workforce to accomplish our goals,” said Matt McGovern, CEO of Cypress Creek Renewables. “Our partnership with Hudson Valley Community College will help ensure we have access to the right people—now and in the future—as we build out our growing pipeline of solar projects in the state.”

“With this new partnership, Hudson Valley will reach a broader and more diverse talent pool to train the growing number of people interested in entering the state’s clean energy economy,” said HVCC President Drew Matonak. “We appreciate Cypress Creek’s recognition of our Workforce Development Institute as a leader in the clean energy field, and we will be reaching out to our community partners to develop interest in this training.”

New York is currently home to over 8,000 solar professionals. Proactive investment in workforce development and training programs could increase this number to 20,000 over the next decade.

Congressman Paul D. Tonko said, “Solar energy is a major growth industry that is creating jobs and opportunity for communities across America including here in our own backyard. Our capital region workforce has the potential to seize economic opportunities coming out of this trend, but only if we develop the skills necessary to keep our region competitive. Ensuring that we have the human capital to support this burgeoning industry will help us continue to be a national and global leader in clean energy jobs and technological development.”

The $25,000 investment by Cypress Creek will be funneled through the college’s Foundation. 
Cypress Creek is particularly hopeful that outreach provided by the funding will be able to attract veterans who may have the need for this kind of career training and who wish to go into the field of solar energy. 

The college’s Workforce Development Institute has been offering successful fast-track entry-level training in the field of photovoltaic installation for more than decade. WDI is currently in the midst of a wide-ranging training partnership with New York State Parks and Recreation to make the state’s parks and campgrounds energy independent by training Parks staff to install and maintain solar panel installations. 

The WDI also has an interesting partnership with Job Corps. Last year, a dozen Job Corps students were in a PV Advanced Training program at centers in Gainesville, FL, and in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, but came to the Workforce Development Institute following the destruction of those centers by Hurricane Maria. They just recently completed the WDI PV program.

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