June 23, 2021, Washington, DC – Today, the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU) re-launched a training and certification program designed to help make District of Columbia Certified Business Enterprises (CBEs), CBE-eligible firms, and their employees more competitive in the green economy. The Train Green Sustainable Energy Infrastructure Capacity Building and Pipeline (SEICBP) Program is a training, credentialing, and certification program designed to assist CBEs and CBE-eligible firms in acquiring new or enhanced skills and knowledge around energy efficiency and renewable energy design, construction, inspection, and maintenance. The program, which began last year, is delivered in partnership with the District’s Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE) and Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD).
“We are incredibly proud to partner with DOEE and DSLBD to deliver this program and provide District firms and residents with high-quality training and opportunities for nationally recognized certifications that will help make them more competitive,” said Ted Trabue, Managing Director of the DCSEU. “Opportunities for this type of work will grow exponentially as the District strives to become the greenest city in the country, and we want to ensure that our residents and businesses are well-prepared.”
The program was created as part of the Clean Energy DC Omnibus Amendment Act of 2018, which requires the District to provide a green training and certification program to CBE and CBE-eligible firms over a five-year period. The program is designed to offset the challenges impacting the local green workforce including a shortage of skilled workers, lack of understanding of green job pathways and business opportunities, misalignment between District building needs and qualified contractors, and lack of coordination within training and credentialing opportunities.
“Training for District residents and businesses in sustainable energy and advanced building technologies is a critical component to the successful green transition,” said Tommy Wells, DOEE Director. “It will not only help to achieve Mayor Bowser’s clean energy and climate goals, but will also provide support for the local business economy with the implementation of the new, groundbreaking Building Energy Performance Standards. Our partnership with the DCSEU and DSLBD to implement this training and certification program demonstrates our continued commitment to building the capacities of our Certified Business Enterprises, and ensuring that District residents have the skills and knowledge to enter careers in clean energy and related industries, by giving them the tools they need to be successful.”
Through the Train Green SEICBP program, the DCSEU will again offer training and certification opportunities to increase the capacity of CBEs and CBE-eligible firms to engage in contracts and procurements related to professional services, energy efficiency and renewable energy design, construction, inspection, and maintenance. In the first year of the program, the DCSEU offered 19 courses to residents from 46 different CBEs, with 111 people taking advantage of the no-cost courses between June and September 2020. Thirty-seven students took exams to pursue national certification opportunities such as Building Performance Institute (BPI) Building Analyst, Energy Audit (Commercial), and Building Science Principles; and LEED Green Associate, LEED AP BD+C, and LEED AP O+M. This year, the DCSEU will offer similar courses and national certification opportunities while also expanding courses to cover topics such as green cleaning and sanitization products and practices.
“Under Mayor Bowser’s leadership, building a vibrant green economy has been a priority,” said Kristi C. Whitfield, Director of the Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD). “The Train Green program provides opportunities for District businesses and residents looking to work in this growing, innovative area and to help make the District a sustainability leader. It also helps our local Certified Business Enterprises (CBE) become even more competitive when seeking contracts with District and federal agencies.”
Since 2015, in addition to the Train Green SEICBP program, the DCSEU has offered a Workforce Development program. This program provides unemployed or underemployed DC residents with externship opportunities with local firms to introduce externs to the energy efficiency and renewable energy fields, combining on-the-job training and experience with weekly soft skills training for approximately five-months, all while being paid at least DC’s Living Wage. More than 75 DC residents have graduated from the program with 85% of those graduates gaining full-time employment after the program. The Train Green SEICBP program will provide additional opportunities for District residents and firms to further build their skills and credentials to pursue opportunities in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and more.
DC residents and staff of CBE or CBE-eligible firms interested in pursuing Train Green SEICP training opportunities can find out more and pre-register for courses at www.dcseu.com/TrainGreen or call 202-479-2222 for more information.