Green job training, but few green jobs

Aug. 22, 2011
Several training programs that specialize in readying students for "green" jobs report graduates have trouble finding "green" employment.

It is easy to find training programs catering to students interested in entering industries considered "green." But finding employment after completing coursework is turning out to be tough for some of these graduates.

Around the country, reports are popping up of training program graduates who have a tough time finding work that uses their new-found skills. One report in the Ventura County Star in Tennessee was of an effort by Operation Stand Down, a Nashville nonprofit that serves veterans, which teamed up with Tennessee State University and Actus Lend Lease, a developer that builds homes on military bases, to provide the hands-on training and certification to become weatherization technicians. The Star says many of those who've gotten training say the effort hasn't translated yet into green jobs.

In some cases there are jobs available for those with the right training, but not near where students reside. That seems to be the case in Connecticut, where the state is in danger of having "more people trained than jobs available," according to Matthew Fritz, special assistant to the governor of Connecticut and state recovery act coordinator, as quoted in the Connecticut Mirror. Another part of the problem is that a lot of "green" job training there is funded by the state of Connecticut, but the state also isn't sure just what skills will be needed for jobs that do open up, the Mirror reports.

The real problem seems to be that renewables are still a small industry. That much becomes clear from a report in the Washington Post quoting the owner of a Florida solar energy company who "sees no need to expand his 25-employee firm because the business is simply not there." The Post also quotes administration officials as acknowledging "that it is likely to be years before the spending on green energy produces large numbers of jobs."

Read more, Ventura County Star : -

Connecticut Mirror,

Washington Post,

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