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Silicon Valley Power responds to electric utility worker shortage with local scholarship awards

Deadline: Nov. 3, 2015

The utility industry is plagued by an aging workforce and by the challenge of finding employees qualified to replace those headed for retirement. In an effort to build its local pool of skilled electrical workers, Silicon Valley Power You are leaving Western's site. (SVP) in Santa Clara, California, is investing in the engineers and technicians of tomorrow.

Kara Johnson, 2009 Silicon Valley Power Scholarship recipient and Santa Clara High School graduate, works on a prototype circuit for a sensor used in her alternative biofuel research. Johnson is a Ph.D. candidate at U.C. San Diego after earning degrees in genetics and biological systems at U.C. Davis. (Photo by Silicon Valley Power)

Kara Johnson, 2009 Silicon Valley Power Scholarship recipient and Santa Clara High School graduate, works on a prototype circuit for a sensor used in her alternative biofuel research. Johnson is a Ph.D. candidate at U.C. San Diego after earning degrees in genetics and biological systems at U.C. Davis. (Photo by Silicon Valley Power)

College and technical school students living in Santa Clara and pursuing careers related to the electric utility industry may be eligible to receive scholarships or tuition grants from the city and SVP. The city is offering $5,000 scholarships to new and continuing college students and $2,000 to trade school trainees who will be enrolled by October 2016 for the 2016-17 school year. Students must apply by Nov. 3, 2015.

Career opportunities and salaries are on the rise for engineers, technicians and power line workers in the industry. SVP, Santa Clara’s municipal electric utility, wants to encourage students to explore those options. “Like SVP, utilities all over the country are looking for qualified workers to be part of the exciting new world of the smart grid,” said John Roukema, Director of SVP. “Satisfying and lucrative career opportunities abound for students completing courses that prepare them for work in the many fields of the electric utility industry.”

The program has awarded 30 college scholarships and six technical school grants totaling $162,000 since it started in 2006.

Applicants studying energy services, electric utilities, or fields associated with the power industry in general may download the application, or call 408-261-5036 for more information. Santa Clara residents have until Nov. 3, 2015 to submit applications for the SVP Scholarship Awards program.

Western salutes our customer Silicon Valley Power for taking a proactive approach to workforce development.

Source: Silicon Valley Power, 10/9/15

Scholarships available for utility newcomers to AESP Summer Conference

Helping people reduce energy use and improve their bottom line is challenging and rewarding—and a little bit daunting to anyone who is new to the field. The Association of Energy Services ProfessionalsRedirecting to a non-government site (AESP) Summer Conference on program implementation and evaluation is a great place to get up to speed by learning from the veterans.

Join your colleagues in San Francisco, Aug. 4-6, to learn about planning utility programs and integrating evaluation and implementation to achieve better outcomes. Energy services experts will be sharing their experiences, results and, most importantly, lessons learned on the road to success.

To encourage new energy services professionals to attend the event, AESP is offering four New Professionals Scholarships covering conference registration. Eligible scholarship applicants will have one to three years of energy-efficiency, demand response or smart grid experience; and must be full-time employees of:

  • Electric or natural gas utilities
  • Public power utilities
  • Regulatory or non-profit entities
  • Public benefit groups
  • Vendors
  • Manufacturers
  • Consulting firms

Your supervisor must approve conference attendance, and recipients will be responsible of their own travel and lodging.

If you meet those qualifications, apply today by sending the following information to AESP:

  1. Give three reasons why you would like to attend the conference.
  2. State what you plan to accomplish and learn from this conference.
  3. Name three takeaways you would like to have from this conference.
  4. Certify that your supervisor will allow travel time to this conference (include his/her name and contact information).
  5. Include your phone number and email so AESP can contact you, if selected.
  6. BONUS: If you have extra time at the conference (it’s a packed agenda!), state what you would like to do in San Francisco.

Deadline for application is June 30, 2014. Scholarship awards will be made by July 2, and acceptance must be confirmed no later than July 8.

Get to SPI Chicago with SEPA Scholarships

Solar Power International (SPI) 2013 Redirecting to a non-government site will be in Chicago, Ill.,  Oct. 21-24. To encourage electric utility professionals to attend, SEPA is offering a limited number of scholarships. The goal is to bring in people who would not otherwise be able to go to the conference due to budgetary or travel restrictions.  

SPI is known as the solar industry’s most comprehensive educational conference and exhibition with more than 20,000 industry and utility members in attendance. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to learn more about solar energy and engage in networking and connecting with colleagues and industry members!

Apply Redirecting to a non-government site by July 17 for a scholarship to Chicago!

For more information, please contact Kaylan Wedekind.