Hands on training for the renewable energy industry

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

"You don't want to get to a job where you'll be around machinery that you have no idea about, when all you know is textbooks," said Michael Boling.

It's hands on learning that ASU Newport student Michael Boling says is preparing him for a career in renewable energy.

"I feel like I'm getting all the training--practical training," said Boling.

Boling is one of a growing number of ASU  Newport students enrolled in the school's Renewable Energy Technology program.

"We're seeing a big push in wind energy, especially in Northeast Arkansas," said instructor, Jack Osier.

In less than a year, the actual teaching program has grown to nearly 60 students.  Osier says they're trying to build and sustain a viable workforce for the renewable energy industries already in  Northeast Arkansas, and ones looking to set up shop here.

"All of the technology that we have is technology that you actually see in the industry," said Osier.

Osier says it's technology they've been able to get over the past several months.  It's an effort to grow the program and set students up for success.

"We are definitely building a very very viable, strong workforce," said Osier.

"When we have hands on, we do labs, we understand how we're going to use that stuff in the field, not just what it says in the book," said one student.

It's the hands on approach and the resources available many students say are benefiting them the most--preparation now, for what they'll see in the future.

"It's a lot better to get here and on top of the textbooks, also have the ability to have hands on training," said Boling.

©2010 KAIT

 all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.