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Winter 2011: Grant pays tuition for energy management training


seed logoA Department of Labor Sound Energy Efficiency Development (SEED) grant will pay tuition, books, and fees for students to earn short certificates in Energy Management at Edmonds College. In addition, students in the program will receive assistance with their job search and have opportunities to participate in events where they can meet energy employers.

“This program is for anyone who is looking for work, but may be having difficulty finding a job, and would benefit from some current training in an in-demand field," said instructor Alison Pugh. "It’s ideal for people who have prior experience in construction, building technology, facilities maintenance, or a related field or, for the energy accounting track, experience with spreadsheets, data management, and budgets. Women, veterans, dislocated workers, and people with disabilities are especially encouraged to enroll.”

Students can start this fall or winter working toward short Residential Energy Auditor, Energy Efficiency Technician, and Energy Accounting Specialist certificates. A Commercial Lighting Auditor program also starts this winter. The certificates can be completed in two quarters (six months or less).

The goal of the grant is to get workers into jobs in these fields. The certificates also count toward a two-year Energy Management degree, which can then transfer to a bachelor’s degree at Central Washington University-Lynnwood on the Edmonds College campus. Most classes are offered evenings or online.

Edmonds College started the Energy Management degree program in 2009, to train workers for new job opportunities due to an increased interest in sustainability and reducing energy bills by utilities, private companies, government organizations, and homeowners.

Students in the program learn about where the Northwest’s energy comes from, what it is used for, and how to monitor energy use. They train to manage and account for energy use as well as to lead projects in energy efficiency, analyze data, and create reports. Combining energy efficiency and business and project management skills, the Energy Management program prepares students to make a difference in the green economy.

Employers hiring workers trained in energy management and conservation include utilities, large corporations, and businesses that are interested in managing energy use in facilities and processes as well as those that install energy-saving equipment including lighting and HVAC contractors, green builders, weatherization manufacturing and sales businesses, and solar power system services.

Certificates that can be earned at no cost to students with the SEED grant:

Residential Energy Auditor — Learn to assess and analyze energy use in residential and small commercial settings. Perform tests using specialized equipment to measure the energy efficiency of a residence. Assess and analyze residential energy use using a whole-home approach, identify problem areas, and prescribe solutions. Ideal for those with prior experience in: construction, facilities maintenance, building technology, or related industries. Start fall or winter quarter.

Commercial Lighting Auditor — Many energy efficiency projects done at the commercial level are lighting-related. This certificate teaches these skills. Assess and analyze energy use in commercial applications with particular emphasis on commercial lighting systems. Learn about different fixtures, lamps, and controls, and be able to identify lighting circuit wiring. Identify problem areas and prescribe solutions to increase lighting efficiency in a cost-effective manner. Ideal for those with prior experience in: construction, facilities maintenance, building technology, or related industries. Start winter quarter.

Energy Accounting Specialist — Learn how to determine the amount of energy used at a site and to spot opportunities for efficiency upgrades. Determine/track the amount of energy used in buildings using utility billing/tracking software. Benchmark energy use against similar facilities, identify patterns and anomalies in data as indicators of opportunities for energy efficiency upgrades. Learn about utility rates and billing structures as well as cost of upgrades and payback analysis. Ideal for those with prior experience in: clerical, accounting and/or budget tracking, and data management. Start fall or winter quarter.

Energy Efficiency Technician — Gain construction and weatherization skills. Learn to work with energy efficiency construction techniques and auditing equipment. For those interested in construction and hands-on work, this training course provides foundational energy knowledge to those involved in the contract work of energy efficiency and weatherization projects. Students learn core construction skills as well as get an introduction to the building envelope and energy efficiency tools and equipment. Ideal for those with prior experience in: construction. Start fall or winter quarter.

Start this fall (classes begin Sept. 20) with these core Energy Management classes: Introduction to Energy Management (Energy Management 100) — Learn about energy efficiency, policy, and sources as well as cost-effectiveness and compliance issues. Meets 6-9 p.m., one day a week.

Energy Basics (Energy Management 102) — Learn the science of energy including energy types and sources, common uses, and renewable sources. Meets 6-9 p.m., one day a week, in class and online (hybrid class).

Introduction to Sustainability (Energy Management 105) — Learn about sustainability as it relates to energy use and the carbon cycle. Online class.

Energy Efficiency Technician (Construction Industry Training 110) — Learn to measure and evaluate a building’s energy performance and become familiar with the tools of an energy auditor. Meets 5:30-9 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 23-Oct. 14 and 9 a.m.-2 p.m., two Saturdays, Oct. 2 and 16.


Edmonds College is preparing workers for the emerging sector of green-collar jobs by providing high quality instruction and hands-on experience. New Restoration Horticulture and Energy Management degrees and classes including Sustainable Development, Human Ecology, and Energy Efficiency are part of the college’s sustainability initiative: www.edmonds.edu/sustain.

Sound Energy Efficiency Development (SEED) — The Northwest Energy Efficiency Council (NEEC), in collaboration with the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County, is a recipient of a $3,876,171 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) U.S. Department of Labor grant for job training and placement in the building energy efficiency sector. NEEC will implement the Sound Energy Efficiency Development (SEED) project through a regional partnership of employers, Workforce Development Councils (WDCs), labor organizations, community and technical colleges, and One-Stop Career Centers. The SEED program will provide training and job placement assistance in energy efficiency assessment occupations in the Energy Efficient Building Construction and Retrofit and Energy Efficiency Assessment industries within the five counties within Washington state: King, Snohomish, Pierce, Kitsap, Clallam.

Funds under this contract were received by Northwest Energy Efficiency Council (from the Department of Labor) Grant/Agreement #NEEC-WDC0001 (DOL Grant #GJ-19876-10-60-A-53) Funding Source: WIA/ARRA Funds, CFDA #17.275

100% of this program is funded by federal funds from the Department of Labor for a total of $533,481.

Edmonds College is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Provider of Employment and Training Programs. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. WTRS 800.833.6384 or 711.