College Awarded State Grant to Increase Pipeline of Wind Turbine Service Technicians

February 15, 2024

As announced by New York State Governor Kathy Hochul, Hudson Valley Community College was awarded a $313,275 grant from the Offshore Wind Training Institute (OWTI) of the New York State Energy Research Development Authority (NYSERDA) to create a new microcredential to increase the pipeline of wind turbine service technicians.

The OWTI, launched in 2020 in collaboration with SUNY’s Farmingdale State College, Stony Brook University and NYSERDA, aims to advance offshore wind training programs and the educational infrastructure needed to establish a skilled workforce to support the emerging national offshore wind industry.

The School of STEM’s proposed two-course, skills-based Wind Energy Fundamentals microcredential will focus on the recommended training for entry-level wind turbine service technicians within the GWO Entry Level Wind Technician Framework and prepare students for further company-specific training from manufacturers and energy service contractors.

Microcredentials are stackable sets of credit or non-credit bearing courses that help students gain career-specific skills. They may be used as an entryway to a degree or certificate at the college or as a standalone verified credential for students to start or grow within in a particular industry. Hudson Valley offers 32 microcredentials in areas such as Greenhouse Management, Bioprocessing and Automation and Foundations of Artificial Intelligence, among others.

The grant provides full scholarships for up to 48 participants. The microcredential will be offered in Fall 2024 through Hudson Valley’s Workforce Development and Community Education office.

The grant is the second awarded to the college by NYSERDA to prepare the workforce for careers in the offshore wind energy sector. The first award, in the amount of $500,000, provided funding to enhance the existing Welding and Fabrication AOS degree program by adding submerged-arc welding instruction and practice, including nondestructive testing coursework and practice, and creating new certificates, micro-credentials and non-credit workforce development programs.

“Hudson Valley Community College is dedicated to preparing the workforce of the future while responding to the ever-evolving needs of our community,” said Hudson Valley Community College President Roger Ramsammy. “The Wind Energy Fundamentals microcredential will help build a clear pathway for individuals interested in careers within the offshore wind industry, and contribute to efforts throughout the state toward increasing renewable energy. I extend my gratitude to Governor Hochul, NYSERDA and the Offshore Wind Training Institute for selecting Hudson Valley as a recipient of these funds.”

NYSERDA is leading the coordination of offshore wind opportunities in New York State and is supporting the development of 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035 in a responsible and cost-effective manner. Offshore wind will be a crucial step on the pathway to a carbon-neutral economy and a critical component in achieving the expanded Clean Energy Standard, whereby 70 percent of New York’s electricity will come from renewable sources by 2030 under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York’s ambitious and comprehensive climate and clean energy legislation.

Hudson Valley’s School of STEM offers several technology associate degrees such as Engineering Technology AS, Engineering Science AS, Electrical Construction and Maintenance, Mechatronics, Clean Energy Management, Heating/Air Conditioning/Refrigeration Technical Services and Construction Technology that could easily transition into the offshore wind industry. The courses within the microcredential will include Wind Energy Fundamentals and Wind Turbine Safety.

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