The solar industry is one of the fastest areas of job growth in America today, offering career opportunities to all education and experience levels. The Solar Foundation leads major initiatives and conducts research to support a strong and diverse solar workforce. According to our National Solar Jobs Censusover 80 percent of solar companies find it difficult to hire qualified employees. The Solar Foundation helps the industry meet urgent hiring needs by connecting solar employers, training providers, career seekers, and workforce boards.

Solar Ready Vets Network

Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces are outstanding candidates for careers in the solar industry. Through the Solar Ready Vets Network, The Solar Foundation is connecting transitioning military service members and veterans with solar industry career training and professional development opportunities. In partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s “Hiring Our Heroes” program, the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), and the Solar Energy Industries Association, we are expanding and strengthening a nationwide pipeline of military talent into a range of technical and leadership roles in the solar industry. 

In November 2019, The Solar Foundation announced two new programs to support solar career opportunities for veterans: The Solar Ready Vets Fellowship and the SOAR Initiative.

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Solar Training Network

The Solar Training Network was a program led by The  Solar Foundation designed to help meet the workforce needs of the solar industry through solar training and strategic employment partnerships. By connecting job seekers, employers, and training providers, this program helped bridge the gap between supply and demand in the solar jobs market. Over the course of the program, the Solar Training Network hosted or supported 14 career fairs, reaching over 1,000 job seekers.

Today, The Solar Foundation is continuing to lead similar initiatives in support of a highly-qualified, well-trained and diverse solar workforce. In September 2019, we hosted a career fair at Solar Power International to connect job seekers with the latest opportunities at national solar companies.

Strategies for Workforce Development: A Toolkit for the Solar Industry

This indispensable resource from the Solar Training Network provides actionable solutions for industry-led workforce development initiatives. Download the toolkit today to learn how teaming with the public workforce system and starting word-based learning programs can benefit your company, and how to get started.

Solar Training and Hiring Insights 2017

The Solar Training Network released an in-depth report in 2017 showcasing solar industry trends, employer preferences and case studies, the business case for investment in training, a state-by-state index of demand for workforce development, and more. Read the report here.

Additional Resources

Solar Career Map. The Interstate Renewable Energy Council Solar Career Map allows instructors, policymakers, and job seeker to explore the broad range of careers available across the entire solar industry.

Financing the Next Generation of Solar Workers. Released in November 2012, Financing the Next Generation of Solar Workers provides a starting point for a new path forward in financing solar workforce training. This marks the culmination of a joint effort between The Solar Foundation, SolarTech, and the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), working together under the SolarTech Workforce Innovations Collaborative (SWIC), to conceive of a number of innovative funding mechanisms to provide adequate private-sector funding for workforce training programs.