More Bases Added to Solar Ready Vets Job Training Program


By Debbie Gregory.

In the pilot phase of the SunShot Initiative’s Solar Ready Vets program, only three military installations participated in the training our nation’s transitioning servicemembers for careers in the solar energy industry. Now, seven additional installations are participating in the highly successful program.

The program is made possible through the DoD’s SkillBridge initiative, which allows exiting military personnel to pursue civilian job training, employment skills training, apprenticeships, and internships up to six months prior to their separation.

Expanding on a previous pilot program, the training connects our nation’s skilled veterans to the solar energy industry, preparing them for careers as solar photovoltaic (PV) system installers, sales representatives, system inspectors, and other solar-related occupations.

Military bases were selected by the Department of Energy, in partnership with the Department of Defense and military branches, based on the number of exiting military personnel from the installation, the strength of the surrounding solar market, and the training capacity of nearby training institutions.

Solar Ready Vets is currently available at the following military installations:

  • Camp Pendleton in California – U.S. Marine Corps
  • Eglin Air Force Base in Florida – U.S. Air Force
  • Fort Bragg in North Carolina – U.S. Army
  • Fort Carson in Colorado – U.S. Army
  • Fort Drum in New York – U.S. Army
  • Hill Air Force Base in Utah – U.S. Air Force
  • Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey – U.S. Air Force, Army, and Navy
  • Joint Base San Antonio in Texas – U.S. Air Force and Army
  • Marine Corps Base Hawaii – U.S. Marine Corps
  • Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia – U.S. Navy

Employment in the U.S. solar industry increased 123% since 2010. The Energy Department has secured commitments from some of the largest U.S. solar companies to interview graduating military trainees for employment, a step that will help place qualified trainees in the high-paying jobs for which they received training.

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.

Military Connection: Joining Forces Initiative Efforts Continue

First Lady Michelle Obama Speaking at Joining Forces Event

First Lady Michelle Obama Speaking at Joining Forces Event

By Debbie Gregory.

In April, the Joining Forces initiative, launched by Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden, announced that a number of companies in the industries of energy and technology have committed to train or hire 90,000 Veterans and military spouses within the next five years.

Joining Forces is celebrating its fourth year of assisting service members, Veterans, and their families and support them through wellness, education, and employment opportunities. The initiative began in 2011, at a time when the Veteran unemployment rate was at 12 %. Shortly after the initiative was launched, President Obama also challenged the private sector to hire 100,000 Veterans and military spouses.

Just four years later, more than 850,000 Veterans and military spouses have been hired or trained. The federal government has also upped its own Veteran hiring initiative, with  30% of its workforce now comprised of military Veterans. As a result of these combined efforts, the total Veteran unemployment rate is at 4.5 %, with a 6.5 % unemployment rate for Veterans of the Post-9/11 era.

But the need to train and hire Veterans for their post-military careers has not diminished. That is why Joining Forces has not slacked in its commitment to service members, Veterans and military families. As proof of this, Joining Forces recently secured a pledge to hire or train 33,000 Veterans and military spouses, over the next five years, from the Solar Energy Industries Association.

The  solar industry is creating new jobs at a rate ten times faster than the rest of the economy. Getting Veteran workers into that industry at such a critical time could mean sustainable careers and bright futures for the men and women who served during our nation’s longest period of war.

Joining Forces will continue to fulfill its commitment to help connect Veterans and military spouses not just to jobs, but to sustainable careers, allowing them to support their families. Joining Forces is calling on all companies, across the nation, in every industry, to do their part and continue to provide opportunities for our Veterans and military families.

Military Connection proudly serves those who serve in the ArmyNavyAir ForceMarinesCoast Guard,Guard and ReserveVeterans and their Families. We are the go to site for Veteran Employment and information on Veteran education. provides Veterans with and Directory of Employers, a Job Boardinformation on the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and a blog that offers Veterans boundless information. Be sure to visit, the go to site.

Military Connection: Joining Forces Initiative Efforts Continue: By Debbie Gregory