HVCC Receives National Science Foundation Grant to Create Electric Vehicle Training Modules
Hudson Valley Community College has been awarded a $350,000 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to fund new training modules that will prepare students for careers in the rapidly-growing electric vehicle industry. The grant project is funded by the NSF’s Advanced Technology Education program, which focuses on the education of technicians for the advanced-technology fields that drive the nation’s economy.
The demand for technicians with knowledge of electric vehicle systems is growing. By 2030, electric vehicles are projected to make up more than a quarter of all vehicles in the United States. As the industry grows, the need for skilled professionals in all areas related to electric vehicles and their power sources is growing as well. One such area is “V2G,” or vehicle-to-grid charging systems. Though demand continues to grow, most of today’s technicians are not trained with the knowledge and skills to design, install, operate and maintain electric vehicle charging systems. That’s where Hudson Valley’s programming comes in.
Through the grant, the college will develop training modules that will address significant knowledge gaps in areas directly impacted by V2G, including automotive repair, electrical construction and maintenance, and green technology management. The modules will also allow opportunities to train high school, community college, and trade educators serving students in traditionally underserved communities in V2G theory and operation; eventually, they will be shared with educational programs nationwide.
“As electric vehicles become more common, the need for trained technicians is becoming more critical than ever,” said Hudson Valley Community College President Dr. Roger Ramsammy. “Hudson Valley, as a leader in emerging technology training and a longstanding workforce development partner to Capital Region and New York State businesses and industries, is committed to leading the effort to bridge that gap with the development of programs and training modules like this one. My thanks to Chris McNally, Ph.D., department chair and professor in the college’s Applied Technologies programs, and Jim Countryman, assistant professor, as well as our many community-based collaborators, for partnering with us and the National Science Foundation to make this endeavor possible.”
This isn’t the college’s first foray into the growing electric vehicle training sector. In 2021, Hudson Valley launched a new two-year Electric and Autonomous Vehicles A.O.S. degree program, focused on teaching students the skills needed to diagnose and repair the emerging technologies found in electric, hybrid and autonomous vehicles, including advanced driver assistance systems and vehicle cybersecurity, as well as the foundational skills needed to perform general automotive repair. The program, along with the new training modules made possible by the NSF grant, will allow Hudson Valley to train hundreds of electric vehicle technicians to help meet the skyrocketing demand in the field. In addition, the college has established an Electric Vehicle Train-the-Trainer Program in partnership with Corporacion Educativa Automotriz (CEA) in Costa Rica and will welcome automotive faculty from CEA to campus in May of 2022, utilizing Hudson Valley’s extensive fleet of electric and hybrid vehicles to collaborate on curriculum development for the college-level electric vehicle repair courses that CEA will offer in Costa Rica.