Published on October 27th, 2010 | by Zachary Shahan6
Florida Inmates to Get Solar Panel Installation Training
October 27th, 2010 by Zachary Shahan
What’s one of the hardest things to do after getting released from prison? Finding a job. With clean tech, and especially solar energy, booming, helping such people get trained for and find jobs in the solar industry is a great way to re-assimilate them into society and ensure they get on their own two feet quickly. It looks like Florida is taking the lead on that front.
With a $740,000 grant from the federal government, the Florida Department of Corrections is about to establish a program for “training inmates nearing release to become certified in Photovoltaic System (solar panel) installation.”
The Department’s Teaching and Enhancing Careers in High technology (TECH) program will be established at Sago Palm Work Camp in Palm Beach county, which recently became the third prison dedicated to preparing soon-to-be released inmates for their successful re-entry into society. Re-entry facilities house inmates with three years or less on their sentences who are returning to specific counties, and ramp up their educational, vocational and treatment classes so they’ll be better prepared to find employment and keep it upon release.
The grant funds will be used to provide remedial academic tutoring; a nine month, 1,200 hour Electrical Technology Career and Technical Education component; on-the-job training; peer mentoring; case management; and post-release career assistance. The Department will partner with a fully licensed and accredited technical center in the Palm Beach area to provide Solar PV System training, leading to inmates earning a North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners certificate prior to release. Training will include a mobile training unit that houses a PV demonstration module so inmates can gain hands-on experience
Great to see my home state of Florida taking the lead on both inmate re-integration into society and advancement of clean tech like solar.
The grant Florida was awarded was part of the Department of Justice’s Second Chance Act Technology Careers Training Demonstration Projects for Incarcerated Adults.
Photo Credit: Chandra Marsono via flickr (CC license)