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Clean Energy Academy Marks Its 500th Graduate

Demand for Green Jobs Expected to Soar as Buildings Reduce Emissions

Con Edison is helping New York meet its urgent need for clean energy workers by investing in green job training, with a focus on helping residents of disadvantaged communities. Con Edison recently hosted the graduation of the 24th cohort of the Clean Energy Academy. This ceremony marks the 500th graduate of the program.

The Clean Energy Academy provides graduates with skills they’ll need to participate in this booming sector of the economy.

“Con Edison is very pleased to support the work of the Clean Energy Academy and its graduates,” said Shaun Hoyte, Energy Efficiency section manager for Con Edison. “These skilled graduates have the tools they need to begin or advance their clean energy careers and help New Yorkers make the transition to green energy, at home and at work.”

Since it opened its doors in 2020, the Academy has offered free advanced-level courses for lighting, HVAC, building envelope, heating and domestic hot water systems, clean heat, and energy modeling. The courses run for 30 to 60 hours plus another 20 hours of professional development.

Roughly 70 percent of the Clean Energy Academy’s participants come from disadvantaged communities and/or priority populations.

More than 75 percent of graduates who sought employment have been placed in clean energy jobs.

New York laws requiring buildings to reduce their carbon emissions are driving opportunity for job seekers looking for well-paying jobs in the energy industry. Some experts estimate that the green workforce will have to increase by more than 140,000 local jobs by 2030. Many of those jobs do not require a bachelor’s degree.

As part of its Clean Energy Commitment, Con Edison is investing in green job training. The company is also helping customers make the transition to clean energy by offering significant incentives for the energy efficiency upgrades and retrofits that will reduce their energy use and carbon footprint.

Funded by NYSERDA, Con Edison, together with its partners, Willdan Energy Solutions, Soulful Synergy, Energy Economic Development Corporation, Learn & Innovate For Education, Enablement, Empowerment (LIFE3), Kawi Energy Group, and Green Tech LEADers are working together to ramp up the skilled workforce needed to achieve New York’s clean energy goals.

Comments from stakeholders:

New York State Senator Kevin Parker, Chair of the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee

“Congratulations to Con Edison’s Clean Energy Academy on today’s 500th graduate and to all the students who have completed the program. A dramatically changing world awaits the skills and knowledge that today’s graduates will bring to the workforce. I am proud of these graduates for the important work they will do to help New York achieve our climate goals.”

New York State Assembly Member Michael Cusick, Chair of the Assembly Energy Committee

“I commend the leadership at Con Edison and the Clean Energy Academy for preparing the latest graduating class with the tools they’ll need to move our State closer to achieving our clean energy goals.”

New York State Assembly Member Latrice Walker

“Please include my voice among those celebrating today’s Clean Energy Academy graduation ceremony, which includes the 500th person to successfully complete the program. It is critically important for public and private entities in New York State to make immediate and meaningful investments to secure the healthy future of the planet. One of the key investments we can make, of course, is an investment in people. That’s what this graduation represents. Hundreds of people, including today’s graduates, are now equipped with skills that will prepare them for careers in the green economy, one of the fastest growing sectors in the state.”

Adele Ferranti, Director of Workforce Development and Training, NYSERDA

“Workforce development and training initiatives like the Willdan Clean Energy Academy are essential to preparing a workforce to build a resilient and equitable clean energy economy that is inclusive of all New Yorkers. This new class of graduates will join the growing number of trained New York professionals that will help translate our ambitious clean energy goals into action.”

Julie Tighe, President of the New York League of Conservation Voters

“As entire sectors of the economy are reimagined and revamped to meet the growing threat of a changing climate, it is critical that we have a robust workforce pipeline in place to build and maintain the infrastructure and technology needed so that New York’s transition to a clean energy economy is a seamless one. That is exactly what Con Edison is doing with their Clean Energy Academy, and with nearly 3/4 of participants coming from disadvantaged backgrounds, they are helping ensure the green economy delivers for all New Yorkers. The New York League of Conservation Voters sends a heartfelt congratulations to all of today’s graduates and we applaud Con Edison for staying true to their Clean Energy Commitment.”

Antuan Cannon, Director of Talent Development & Innovation, Willdan

“We are thrilled to be graduating our 500th participant and 24th cohort of the Willdan Clean Energy Academy! The program has been a real win-win! Our graduates have benefited from the training and career services, and many local clean energy companies have been able to grow their teams by hiring through this program. In fact, more than 75 percent of graduates who sought employment have been placed in clean energy jobs.”

Dwayne R. Norris, Co-Founder of Soulful Synergy, LLC

"As I look out at this group of graduates and alumni, I am proud to see the full spectrum of diversity, where age, gender, ethnicity, background, experience, personality, perspective, and so much more, are all represented. I believe this is exactly what the industry needs to become its best. We welcome anyone interested in a fulfilling career path to reach out to us and apply."

Consolidated Edison, Inc. [NYSE: ED], one of the nation’s largest investor-owned energy companies, with approximately $14 billion in annual revenues and $66 billion in assets. The utility delivers electricity, natural gas and steam, and serves 3.5 million customers in New York City and Westchester County. Through Consolidated Edison Inc.’s subsidiary, Con Edison Clean Energy Businesses, the company is the second largest owner of solar electric projects in North America. For financial, operations and customer service information, visit For energy efficiency information, visit Also, visit us on Twitter and Facebook.