Beloit College, a private liberal arts university in Southern Wisconsin, has educated renowned theorists, authors, scientists, and athletes. Here at GRID Colorado, we do not think those Beloit alumni hold a candle to the group of eight students who participated in this year’s Solar Spring Break. Instead of hitting the beach or sleeping until noon each day, these eight students chose to spend their spring break advancing the mission and vision of GRID Alternatives. Their dedication to increasing access to renewable energy technology and job training opportunities was showcased throughout the week’s programming and in their impressive level of engagement during each presentation and discussion. On the last two days of Solar Spring Break, the Beloit students helped lay the foundation for the Grand Valley Power community solar array, which will serve 5-10 households in Grand Junction, Colorado. Though their work digging holes and otherwise installing groundwork was not glamorous, their help was invaluable!
The Solar Spring Break program provides an opportunity for “students who are passionate about renewable energy the chance to see solar technology in action, building more resilient communities,” said GRID Alternatives CEO Erica Mackie. Beloit College is one of a handful of schools with an active GRID Campus Chapter; the student participants and many of their peers join together during the school year to explore topics associated to low-income access. As a group, the GRID Campus Chapter discusses possible solutions to the ever-widening climate gap faced by many families across the country and determine possible career paths in the renewable industry following graduation. Brandon, a Beloit Spring Breaker, said “[GRID’s] SolarCorps program sounds like the perfect way for me to move forward in my professional goals!”
The students participating in GRID’s Solar Spring Break program will surely be leaders in the fight against climate change tomorrow. After seeing the Beloit youth in action last week, we are confident that the world will be in very capable, passionate and dedicated hands.