A clean energy economy requires a skilled workforce, and the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) would like to help ensure that such a workforce exists. Towards that end, the organization has awarded its first ever Seal of Approval to three college wind turbine service technician training programs in the West.
The three schools now recognized by the AWEA for their top-notch programs are Columbia Gorge Community College’s Renewable Energy Technology 9 Month Certificate Program for Wind Turbine Service Technicians (The Dalles, Oregon), Iowa Lakes Community College’s Associates of Applied Science in Wind Energy & Turbine Technology program (Estherville, Iowa), and Texas State Technical College’s Associates of Applied Science in Wind Energy & Turbine Technology program (Sweetwater, Texas).
The AWEA Seal of Approval program called for applications last year and took a critical look at whether educational and training institutions with technician programs are teaching the skills that an entry-level service technician needs, as identified by experts among AWEA’s 2,500 company members.
AWEA sees its Seal of Approval Program as a quality assurance mechanism that will help strong programs stand out and fortify the industry as a whole with a pool of qualified technicians fully prepared to enter the wind power work force.