Duke Energy Renewables provides $10,000 to jump-start job readiness in U.S. commercial solar energy industry

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  • Funds will be used to support Solar Energy International’s education scholarship program

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Duke Energy Renewables and Solar Energy International (SEI) today announced their partnership to provide a scholarship fund to assist Americans who have experienced recent job displacement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The scholarship fund will award $10,000 in solar training tuition fees for SEI online or in-person training to selected students to support their professional development and eventual entry into the solar energy workforce.

“As commercial solar energy continues to grow across the country, trained solar technicians to manage solar facilities and technology are in high demand,” said Chris Fallon, vice president of Duke Energy Renewables. “We’re proud to support individuals interested in entering the solar energy field, which will bring new talent and ideas to the industry.”

The amount of solar energy connected to the grid has reached over 62.5 gigawatts in the U.S. This has resulted in the creation of thousands of new solar industry jobs, with more than 240,000 people currently employed and many more likely to be needed in the future.

Focused on supporting communities economically affected by the pandemic, Duke Energy Renewables’ SEI scholarships have been established with the goal of empowering soon-to-be solar energy experts with the necessary training to quickly join a growing and secure solar workforce.

“We sympathize with the challenges many out-of-work Americans are facing during these uncertain times and, at the same time, are excited to have an industry partner that is willing to invest in providing valuable training opportunities for those most impacted by COVID-19’s economic aftermath,” said Marla Korpar, development director at SEI.

Those looking to apply for scholarship funding must be interested in moving toward a vocation in renewable energy in the U.S. and should demonstrate a financial need. Candidates selected by SEI will be awarded tuition funds to cover SEI’s online or in-person training.

For more information and to apply for a Duke Energy Renewables scholarship, visit: www.solarenergy.org/scholarship-funds.

Duke Energy Renewables

Duke Energy Renewables, a nonregulated unit of Duke Energy, operates wind and solar generation facilities across the U.S., with a total electric capacity of 3,000 megawatts. The power is sold to electric utilities, electric cooperatives, municipalities, and commercial and industrial customers. The unit also operates energy storage and microgrid projects. Visit Duke Energy Renewables for more information.

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, in addition to Duke Energy Renewables’ capacity.

Duke Energy is transforming its customers’ experience, modernizing the energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2020 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list, and Forbes’ 2019 “America’s Best Employers” list. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.   

Duke Energy Foundation

The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to meet the needs of communities where Duke Energy customers live and work. The foundation contributes more than $30 million annually in charitable gifts, and is funded by Duke Energy shareholder dollars. More information about the foundation and its Powerful Communities program can be found at duke-energy.com/foundation.

About Solar Energy International

Solar Energy International (SEI) was founded in 1991 as a nonprofit educational organization with a vision of a world powered by renewable energy. We’re dedicated to training the global solar energy workforce to significantly impact climate change. For more information, visit https://www.solarenergy.org.

Media contact: Jennifer Garber