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: Training Program for Solar Industry Expanded

solar ready vets

By Debbie Gregory.

Ten military installations are slated to participate in a new initiative that provides jobs and energy.

Recently, President Obama kicked off the expansion of what is being called the “Solar Ready Vets Program” at Hill Air Force Base, in Utah.

Last year, a few small pilot programs started around the country through a partnership between the Department of Energy and the DOD, with the intention of connecting Veterans to the solar energy industry. The program prepare participants for careers as solar photovoltaic (PV) system installers, sales representatives, system inspectors, and other solar-related occupations.

The success of these pilot programs, combined with the growing demand of jobs in the field of solar energy, and the ongoing need to employ our nation’s Veterans, has resulted in the expansion of the Solar Ready Vets Program. The goal is to train 75,000 workers for the renewable energy industry by 2020. Through the Solar Ready Veterans Program, a large portion of these workers will be former service members.

Hill AFB is one of the ten military installations that will participate in the expanded program. Solar Ready Vets is underway at Camp Pendleton, Fort Carson, and Naval Station Norfolk.

Through the program, transitioning service members will learn how to size and install solar panels, connect electricity to the grid, and interpret and comply with local building codes. This accelerated training will prepare them for these careers in this high demand field.

The solar industry is adding jobs at a rate of ten times faster than the bulk of the rest of the economy. This makes it a promising industry for Veterans to get into today.  With the unemployment rate for transitioning service members being consistently over the national unemployment rate, a growing job market should attract a lot of Veterans to the solar industry.

For more information about the Solar Ready Vets program, please visit the U.S. Department of Energy’s web portal at

Military Connection proudly serves those who serve in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve, Veterans 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 Board, information 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: Training Program for Solar Industry Expanded: By Debbie Gregory