Virginia Educators and Energy Industry Leaders Recommend Solutions to Support Virginia’s Energy Workforce Preparation and Training

Virginia energy and education groups today
released a priorities and recommendations paper entitled “Solutions to Support Energy in the New Virginia Economy.” The Virginia Energy Workforce Consortium (VEWC), the Virginia Nuclear Energy Consortium (VNEC) and Virginia’s Community Colleges System (VCCS) are sponsoring the paper and its energy workforce policy recommendations that stem from a spring conference attended by over 100 educators, energy industry leaders, and state officials.

“The conference we hosted in the Spring was very productive,” said Matt Kellam, chair of the VEWC. “It was a great opportunity for energy and education workforce leaders to come together to discuss the needs, available programs, and new policy ideas to better meet our current and future energy workforce demand. This paper identifies specific steps and actions that will lead to more focused and coordinated energy workforce preparation and training in Virginia.”

Recommendations in the paper include: creation of a 17th energy career cluster in the state Department of Education, development of an energy career pathway up through Virginia’s colleges, and a plan to gather workforce supply and demand data.

“Addressing unmet needs in workforce training is an essential part of the community college mission,” said Glenn DuBois, chancellor of Virginia’s Community Colleges. “That certainly includes the energy sector. We will continue our work to ensure that the training programs and pathways we offer match employer needs and evolve along with them.”

“Energy—all types at all levels—is a major piece of Virginia’s economy, and continues to grow,” said Marshall Cohen, Executive Director, VNEC. “We will bring our ideas and recommendations to the attention of state policymakers, candidates for office, and state officials in hopes they will recognize their value and work with us and others to implement them.”

To download a copy of the paper, visit: http://bit.ly/VAPathways.