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hands on solar, leading photovoltaics education

We can all agree that the solar photovoltaics industry is booming, it’s taking off like a rocket ship. Although with all this rapid growth surrounding the industry there are growth barriers in the way before solar photovoltaics can reach the mainstream market. There just isn’t enough qualified people to help customers go solar, the industry and governments have been funding research & development of photovoltaic technology although they’ve overlooked a critical component, solar education. I met Brian Hurd, at an ethnic press conference at USC back in 2006 and was intrigued by his passion to provide quality photovoltaic education and through that experience I learned about the great work he was doing training future solar professionals at the East Los Angeles Skills Center (ELASC). I immediately told my friend Linh Tran to check out the ELASC since he was eager to learn more about photovoltaics. Linh went to visit the school and was hooked from the very first day, he enrolled the class and the rest is history. He went through the program and eventually became a NABCEP entry level professional, which is certificate of basic knowledge of photovoltaic systems received at the end of the program, if the student is able to pass a well balanced test. In fact, ELASC has the highest passing ratio in the industry for the NABCEP photovoltaic entry level exam. Today, Linh and other great students from Brian’s class at the ELASC are working with to help customers become more energy efficient and produce power from the sun. At that point I realized that education is the key in the photovoltaics industry, it improves the customer experience of purchasing solar power, keeps the industry reputable by having safe code compliant installations in the field and it makes it easier for solar companies to create jobs since the qualified labor is being manufactured by solar photovoltaics school put together by Brian. Brain recently retired from ELASC and handed off the teaching to some great instructors but he isn’t throwing in the towel just yet. He’s now focusing 100% of his time to push solar education even further into the mainstream through Hands on Solar, a company he founded to improve solar education nationwide. Brian’s goal is to allow schools all over the country to share the same success the photovoltaic program has achieved at the ELASC. Hands on Solar works with individual schools to assist in the set up of appropriate instructional programs in photovoltaics, alternative energy, and energy efficiency, based on industry set standards. In partnership with the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and Advanced Transportation...

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