Sequoia Community Corps Learns Green Job Skills

By Chantel Medeiros
Visalia, CA (January 2, 2010)- Since its inception in 1986, CSET’s Sequoia Community Corps has been training local youth in green jobs. Classroom instruction takes place at CSET’s Visalia headquarters in the John Muir Charter School, an accredited high school that enables students to earn diplomas. Instruction also includes a life-skills component, case-management services and post-program support, including job placement.

The goal of CSET’s Green Jobs program is to prepare students for a range of postsecondary opportunities, including careers in traditional and alternative green industries, such as:
* Energy auditors.
* Environmental technicians.
* Weatherization technicians.
* Urban/park and forestry specialists.
* Solar photovoltaic technicians.
* Recycling coordinators.
* Green construction workers.
* Air quality technicians.
* Lead/asbestos abatement specialists.
* Sampling/calibration/analysis technicians.
* Health and safety technician/trainers.
In this past year, CSET, along with community partners, has been successful in obtaining funding for green-job training and continues to pursue opportunities that will create sustainable growth and local avenues of employment in green-job sectors such as weatherization, solar, urban and park forestry, recycling, construction, and brownfield development.
According to “Many Shades of Green: Diversity and Distribution of California’s Green Jobs,” a recent report by the nonpartisan Next 10 and Collaborative Economics, the green-jobs field continues to grow even in rural areas with a smaller economic base. Green jobs are growing faster than the overall economy.
CSET currently contracts with the California Department of Community Services and Development, or CSD, as a Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program provider and has weatherized 3,426 homes since 2001 while providing Sequoia Community Corps members with the opportunity to develop skills through on-the-job training in weatherization while under the supervision of a state-certified contractor. CSD’s new Solar for All program, which kick offs early this year, expands these efforts by providing funding for installation of solar photovoltaic, or PV, systems on the rooftops of low-income homes while providing work-force-development opportunities in solar installation, a fast-growing sector of the emerging green-jobs industry.
The new solar PV installation course builds upon CSET’s career-track green-jobs curriculum, open to all members of the Sequoia Community Corps, CSET’s certified local conservation corps. The Green Jobs program also offers coursework in green construction, energy efficiency/weatherization, urban forestry and recycling. The solar PV system installation curriculum will follow the weatherization model, also including an on-the-job training component that will enable students to acquire firsthand experience in industry best practices.
For those interested, orientations are held twice weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays for youth ages 18-24 who are interested in learning more about SCC’s green-job training programs. For more information, contact CSET at 732-4194.
Related Resources:
Many Shades of Green: Diversity and Distribution of California’s Green Jobs
Visalia Times Delta- Sequoia Community Corps Learns Green Job Skills