Green Careers

Are you concerned about the environment? Do you want to help stem global warming and rainforest decimation? If so, a green career may be for you. Community colleges around the country are offering programs in sustainable energy, from solar panels to wind turbines. From biodiesel to energy storage, explore your green career options here.
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Environmental science is a rapidly growing field, particularly in light of challenges to our environment like global warming, exponential population growth and potentially dangerous carbon emissions. Environmental scientists work to find ways to meet and overcome those challenges, in order to maintain a livable environment for generations to come. Training needs of this field can often be found at a local community college, where a two-year degree in environmental science can prepare you for a rewarding career or the next step in your education process.

What is Environmental Science?
Environmental science is the study of how various factors like industry, production and humans impact the natural environment. Through those studies, an environmental scientist look for ways to limit damage to wildlife, humans and natural habitat, through processes like conservation and green living ideas. The field of environmental science is a truly innovative one, as professionals in the industry look for new energy sources that are friendlier to the world in which we live.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics explains that an environmental scientist may begin his work by identifying the problems leading up to environmental damage. The scientist will then look for solutions to those problems, by observing and analyzing components of air, food, water and soil. The job is highly specialized and might involve working with other companies or government agencies to educate, develop policies and measure the results of those policies on the environment.
What does an Environmental Scientist Do?
The job of an environment scientist is diverse, . . . read more

Community colleges often serve a unique role in their communities by offering specific job training for nearby industries hoping to beef up their workforces. The latest addition to Chattanooga State Community College follows in those footsteps, offering first-class job training for a plant that is not even scheduled to open in the area until later next year. How do the soon-to-be new industrial neighbors from Germany know Chattanooga State will be able to meet their employment needs? They had a direct hand in creating the institute that will train up their first generation of American employees.

The Wacker Corporation
Wacker Chemical Corporation is a German-based conglomerate that manufactures hyperpure polysilicon that is used to convert sunlight into energy. The company is currently building a new plant in Bradley County – its first on American soil. However, before that plant can celebrate its grand opening late in 2013, it must find approximately 650 highly skilled workers to man the plant floor. That is where the Wacker Institute comes in to help.
Through a cooperative effort between Chattanooga State Community College and Wacker Chemie, the Wacker Institute has been born. According to a press release at Market Watch, this $5 million pilot plant will become a part of the engineering technology division at Chattanooga State. The plant will serve as the training facility for the hundreds of skilled workers that will be needed at the Wacker plant next year. To ensure the training is specifically geared to Wacker needs, . . . read more

Going green” has become a mantra for institutions of higher education across the country, particularly community colleges dedicated to training a new generation of workers in industries that need them most. Since much of today’s technology and industry are beginning to revolve around sustainability, raising awareness and providing training in green industries will benefit graduating students and the communities and businesses.  We have a few examples of community college campuses that are taking green education to the next level.

Danville Area Community College Adding Green Curriculum
Illinois will be seeing more workers trained for green jobs as Danville Area Community College established a new curriculum that emphasizes sustainability and energy-efficiency. According to a report at the Commercial-News, the college has received a portion of a three-year $19.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Initiative and the Illinois Green Economy Network. In addition, the DACC board recently voted to enter into an agreement between the school and the Illinois Green Economy Network (IGEN) in order to participate in energy-saving projects with the organization.
“It all evolves around dislocated workers and training them for green jobs,” Bruce Rape, Dean of Business and Technology for DACC, told the Commercial-News. Rape described the new hybrid programs in manufacturing and wind energy technology as examples of this partnership that will bring more trained workers into green industries throughout the state. These programs will be done in partnership with Highland Community College . . . read more

Metal is a material that has been used for the construction of many of our buildings and much of our infrastructure today. As this substance corrodes over time, it creates serious safety, environmental and financial concerns across the globe. The industry of corrosion technology is a relatively new field committed to preserving construction projects of all kinds with corrosion prevention and repair. Now community colleges are coming onboard this exciting new field to train up a new generation of workers committed to preserving the hard work of generations past.

What is a Corrosion Technician?
According to the Kilgore College website, corrosion technicians work in both indoor and outdoor settings, installing, maintaining and inspecting properties of all kinds. Structures of concern for corrosion technicians might include massive underground pipelines, industrial equipment and storage tanks. The technician might also work in transportation, maintaining airplanes, boats and other vessels.
The corrosion technician must have a background in chemistry, metallurgy and electricity. These professionals may specialize in a particular area of corrosion technology, such as coating inspection or material selection, but others may work in a more generalized setting. According to a report at Pay Scale, the average salary for corrosion engineers ranges from just under $40,000 annually to more than $100,000, depending on the level of skill, training and experience. The field is a growing one, with an increasing demand for corrosion technicians as current infrastructure ages, and few workers trained and ready to fill the positions. Fortunately, more community colleges are offering . . . read more

Solar energy is a growing technology that may be one of the best options to oil in the future. To answer the call within the solar industry, more community colleges are coming onboard to train a new workforce of solar energy technicians. From a new solar energy lab in Maine to programs in solar thermal systems across the country, those who are interested in this exciting, growing field can get the training they need to launch a rewarding career in the solar energy industry.

Solar Technology Lab Opens in Maine
Kennebec Valley Community College has plenty to celebrate this year. The school is opening a new Solar Heating and Cooling Lab in the Muriel P. Frye building on the Fairfield campus, according to a report in the Morning Sentinel. The college was chosen by the U.S. Department of Energy in 2009 as one of nine regional resource and training locations nationwide. The Department of Energy partnered with the U.S. Departments of Labor and Education to launch the Solar Instructor Training Network at community colleges across the country.
The Solar Instructor Training Network is designed to prepare trainers for solar technology programs across the country. The trainers that complete the program will then go to various colleges to prepare students for careers in the solar heating and cooling industry. According to a report at WABI TV5, the lab at Kennebec has been in development for more than a year and serves as an example of how solar energy can . . . read more
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