The RISE (Realizing an Inclusive Solar Economy) initiative brings together all of the elements for a successful workforce development program:
- Recruitment – Conducting outreach through a network of community partners, local jurisdictions, housing authorities, community colleges, job training organizations, job fairs and the media to educate people in underserved communities about solar job opportunities and offer an entry path.
- Real-world experience – Providing hands-on solar installation training to 4000 individuals over a two-year period in partnership with over 70 job training organizations and community colleges. Training opportunities are available throughout California, Colorado, New York, New Jersey and the Mid-Atlantic, and, in 2016, New England.
- Readiness – Partnering with the industry to provide additional training opportunities that match trainees’ skills with employers’ needs, and placing 40 individuals in year-long paid fellowships through GRID Alternatives’ SolarCorps program.
- Referrals – Providing hiring employers with direct access to trained individuals through a robust resume bank, and making direct referrals of top candidates.
- Retention – Engaging the solar industry around issues of diversity to promote a culture of inclusivity.