Graduation to employment: are students trained for available jobs?
It’s graduation season and countless speeches are being given to new grads about the opportunities in front of them. But once the celebrations are over, the biggest hope for many grads is that their education will lead to a job. According to FreeEnterprise.com, statistics show that there are 3.7 million jobs sitting unfilled because the workforce does not have the skills required.
Does your training program prepare students with the skills they need to succeed on the job? When your students hit the streets, are they trained for the jobs that are available? How do employers know to distinguish your training from your competitors? For training in renewable energy and energy efficiency, IREC accreditation indicates to students and employers that a training program teaches the skills defined by the industry as job requirements – through a formal job task analysis (JTA).
The National Solar Job Census produced by the Solar Foundation reports that there are 43,700 jobs in the solar industry in California alone. Across all states, there are a growing number of jobs in solar installations, manufacturing, sales and distribution, and project management. To effectively fill these jobs, employers and students need to be able to depend on the quality of education. This is true for jobs in all technologies related to the clean energy economy.
The job skills linkage between training and industry is critical to the continued growth of the clean energy sector. Industry and educators need to be at the table together to ensure that jobs are well-defined through a JTA, and that curriculum is designed to effectively prepare the workforce.
At IREC, we applaud the training providers who keep a strong connection with industry and who have risen to the challenge of achieving accreditation or certification. Congratulations to our most recent training program awardees, Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, New River Center for Research and Training, and FSL Southwest Building Science Training Center.
IREC credentials are a badge of quality. I invite you to get in the game and learn more at www.irecusa.org.
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