ED's Corner: Create Your Own History

Last year during Black History Month, GRID Mid-Atlantic team member Sundiata Ramin spoke about the systemic diminishing of Black history on our blog

The fact is, Black history has been fighting for survival for a very long time. That fuels my motivation to empower black and brown people in my community to create their own histories through workforce development.

It’s amazing to see trainees gain skills and build their careers. It’s even more satisfying to hear our program graduates share their experiences and mold a new historical narrative. 

A perfect example was last week, when GRID Mid-Atlantic’s own Kennard Carter had the privilege to testify in front of the DC Council about his growth from Solar Works DC trainee to a Workforce Training Supervisor.

"I started out as a trainee, and now I train the exact same class," Kennard said. "This program (Solar Works DC) showed me that there's always a light at the end of the tunnel. It gives me an opportunity to give back to my community and reach a hand toward my peers so they can get the same training I got."

Everyone should have the opportunity to create their own history and to share it. The NextGen Training Academy, which we are proudly launching next month, will give more people the tools to do that.

NextGen will include a Women in Solar program to connect women with career opportunities in solar. As we transition from Black History Month to Women’s History Month, it’s crucial to acknowledge how women’s history (and their presence in the solar industry) has been diminished as well. 

I’m excited for NextGen to open new doors that encourage women and people of color to create history—not just for the collective, but for themselves. Together, we can create an equitable, inclusive, and diverse solar industry that represents the communities around us. 

We appreciate your support of our work and our mission.

Warmest Regards,

Elijah Perry
Executive Director, GRID Mid-Atlantic