Solar and batteries have been in the news quite often these days. There has been a lot of market “buzz” lately about the new Tesla Battery, the cost of oil, and the need for more and cleaner battery and storage options. When the graduates of US Solar Institute’s (USSI) advanced solar training program had an opportunity for some hands-on solar training at a Miami Battery company, the timing was perfect for their solar install experience.
Micropower Battery Solar Install
Miami business Mircopower Battery Company had made the decision to go solar. Florida Solar One and students from USSI’s PV401 class were selected to participate in the solar installation. The project was a 33 kW solar system, completed in May of 2015. The solar system used Renasola panels, SnapNrack PV racking and mounting systems, and Chint inverters.
This opportunity provided unparalleled, real-world experience for the USSI students. After completion of over 120 classroom and lab hours, as well as a full 30 hour OSHA safety course, the students donned their safety gear and spent a full four days on this commercial job site. With the supervision of the Florida Solar One installation crew and engineers, students assisted with racking installation, preliminary wiring, and panel installation.
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On-the-job training is crucial and can be hard to find for somebody just getting started in the solar industry. Offering students the chance to work on an actual job site is an educational perk that gives USSI students a kick start for entering the solar workforce by providing that initial experience. After learning something in the classroom and then practicing in a lab, actually putting those skills to use in a real world scenario is simply the next step of learning process for USSI students. At the end of the week, graduates have a wide range of experience from being actively involved in an installation outside of the controlled classroom environment.
“We developed the hands-on training portion of our advanced solar training program with our solar install company, Florida Solar One, in response to a demand that we saw in the workforce.” Explained Ray Johnson, founder and owner of USSI. “There are many books, online courses, and classroom scenarios where a student can ‘lean solar,’ but all the knowledge in the world can’t fully prepare a student for what actually happens on a job site. Working on a jobsite like Micropower Battery provides invaluable experience for these students and prepares them to enter the solar workforce.”