College Trains Future Professionals For Sustainable Energy Market

If you fancy a career in sustainable energy, a practical, hands-on course may be just the ticket. Ecotech Institute, which bills itself as America’s only college focused entirely on professional education for the alternative energy sector, has announced that it is bolstering its wind energy training and safety labs.

The college is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools and launched in Aurora, Colorado in April 2010 with seven practical degree programs and one certificate program that provide graduates with skills required by alternative energy employers.

Ecotech Institute's Wind Energy Technology program is a two-year associate's degree program focused on the generation and transmission of energy using wind power. Graduates are trained to enter the workforce as wind energy technicians.

A career in wind power holds great prospects these days. The Department of Energy recently said wind power is the fastest growing energy source in the world. Adding a good dash of optimism, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) recently said in its third quarter report that wind energy is more affordable than ever, and new installations across the country are saving consumers money on their electric bills, as utilities rush to lock in long-term favorable rates. 2011 will finish strong, somewhere between the industry’s high point of 2009 and the recent dip in 2010 caused by turmoil in federal tax policy, the organization said.

As part of the expansion, Ecotech has purchased state-of-the-art equipment such as a generator trainer, fiber optic splicing kit, specialty tools, a Lab-Volt Wind Turbine Nacelle Trainer, Lab-Volt Wind Turbine Hub Trainer, and several wind farm simulation software packages, besides many others.

"The integrated systems approach offered by LabVolt's Wind Turbine Training Simulators provide a very realistic view of the functionality and programming of a large, commercial wind turbine," added Shawn Lamb, program director at Ecotech Institute. "These are leading-edge technologies that effectively prepare students and get them excited about going into the field."

EcoTech said ideal applicants for the wind power program are people who love working outdoors, are committed to sustainable energy, have an interest in working on mechanical devices, enjoy math and science and like working with power tools to assemble, repair or install.

Image credit: Ecotech