The Solar Ready Vets Network builds capacity for the solar industry to recruit and retain military talent. While our program does not currently offer direct job placement services, we lead several initiatives to bridge gaps and advance the industry’s efforts to invest in military talent at all levels of the workforce.
Below, you’ll find links to our programs and other resources to connect solar employers with military talent.
Solar Ready Vets Fellowship
Recruit the best and brightest military talent as they transition to the civilian workforce. The fellowship program is offered at no cost to employers through our partner Hiring Our Heroes and entails 12 weeks of on-the-job experience in professional/management roles, intended to lead to employment.
With Hiring Our Heroes, Solar Ready Vets hosts virtual solar hiring fairs for solar employers to connect with military talent. In April 2021, our most recent event drew over 400 military candidates and 25 solar employers, with outcomes of over 70% conversion to next steps in the hiring process. Join the Solar Ready Vets Network to stay current on all events and opportunities.
Adaptive Construction Solutions
Solar Ready Vets has partnered with Adaptive Construction Solutions (ACS) to connect employers with their apprenticeship program. ACS sponsors a group DOL Registered Apprenticeship across the state of Texas and has grown to sponsor one of the largest apprenticeships in the nation for veterans and other targeted communities. Over 75% of ACS’s apprentices are veterans. ACS’s Energy Utilities Installer Apprenticeship (focused on large-scale solar installation roles) helps solar employers with their need for qualified talent. The ACS apprenticeship offers on-the-job training, classroom training, and increasing wages to apprentices as skillsets are mastered.
Home Builders Institute
Home Builders Institute (HBI) Military Program offers pre-apprenticeship training programs in construction located at 10 of the largest military installations in the nation. Transitioning service members participate in this cost-free 12-week training program in the construction trades before they complete their military service. During the program, service members spend 75% of their time in hands-on training, earn professional certifications, and receive job placement support (at no cost to the trainee or hiring employer). Carpentry and electrical skills that transitioning service members gain through HBI’s pre-apprenticeship program are in high demand in the solar industry for roles such as installers, site survey technicians, electrician assistants, etc. HBI is also in the process of developing an updated advanced electrical curriculum that will include a heavy focus on solar at Camp Pendleton near San Diego.
Airstreams provides 6-week hands-on technical training to military veterans and transitioning service members on fundamental safety requirements and technical skills relevant to renewable energy, notably: OSHA 10, electrical safety & troubleshooting, schematic and blueprint reading, mechanical knowledge & experience with hand tools, climbing & safety training. Trainees are also provided with career and job placement services.
Recruiting and Retaining Military Talent
Does your company have a strategy in place to hire veterans? Several resources are available through the US Department of Labor, the public workforce development system, and veterans career services organizations to connect employers with military talent. These resources are provided as a starting point for employers to define and implement a strategy to hire (and retain!) military talent.
Solar Ready Vets Capacity Building Initiatives
The Solar Ready Vets Network leads several capacity building initiatives to strengthen relationships between solar industry employers, training providers, and the public workforce system. We’re working to expand formalized work-based learning, regional workforce partnerships, and more.
Workforce Development Partnerships
Industry-led workforce development efforts are critical to ensure that employers can recruit and retain qualified talent as the industry continues to grow. Solar Ready Vets facilitates partnerships between employers and community colleges to improve solar training and hiring outcomes at local and regional scales.
Solar Industry Apprenticeships
Apprenticeships are a valuable tool for training and retaining veteran talent. Solar Ready Vets has convened a working group of solar industry, training, and workforce development partners to develop an apprenticeship program framework, and expand apprenticeship opportunities across the industry.
Join the Solar Ready Vets Network
To get involved, or just stay up to date on opportunities, please join the Solar Ready Vets Network and indicate your interest in our various initiatives. Or email Becky Long, senior program manager at the Solar Energy Industries Association ([email protected]) to get started now.Join the Network