Green Job Training for the Unemployed

Fri, 2010-01-22 11:41
Are you seeking a Green Job?  Are you also unemployed?  Well, you’re in luck. There are many federal, state and private funding programs to help prepare you to either get a green job or to green up your existing job skills. With many of these programs administered at the county level and with 6000+ counties nationwide, the funding process is daunting for most people. Aside from the help that we can provide you here at Everblue, I’d like to explain the job training programs and their aims. Many people don’t realize that these programs exist, and this is really a fundamental change in our society’s approach to unemployment insurance.


Historically, if you lost your job, you could rely on unemployment insurance to carry you through until you found a new one. An unemployment insurance program is a tide over and assumes that you can get a new job in your existing field. Well, globalization has really forced us to change this existing approach.  Many jobs have disappeared as manufacturing and now service industries are migrating overseas. The theory that unemployment insurance would tide you over till you found a new job doesn’t work when your entire industry has basically disappeared (i.e. North Carolina Textiles or Detroit’s Automakers).  Additionally, the rapid pace of technological innovation has outpaced our ability to educate workers. Thirty years ago, a factory worker or an office worker knew how to do his or her discrete task. Today it’s much more than that. Workers are supervising robots and databases (think of most of your corporate IT systems), expected to interact with and manipulate data (think Excel, Access, Word, websites, etc), communicate incessantly (think phone, email, SMS, Chat, Wiki, blogs, etc.), comply with all regulatory standards (safety, environmental, etc), all while being expected to contribute to innovation and productivity. This is not your father’s workplace.


So in the past, if a new technology took 30 years to fully impact us, that was fine. Older workers simply retired and were eventually (over decades) replaced with younger workers educated in the new technology. That no longer works when new technologies and software systems are coming out every two years. Did GPS, Google Maps, the Internet, blogs or Microsoft Word/Excel even really exist 10 years ago? Today, show me a job where these are just assumed.


Today, if you want to gain employment, the expectation is that you will arrive at your next job with these and many other skill sets already in hand. That means we’ve all got to become life-long learners. Education does not stop at high school or college graduation. And there’s where the workforce development programs come in. Rather than just pay people to simply look for a new job, the workforce development programs invest money and incentivize workers to gain additional skills. These skills will help you get a job.


Here at Everblue, we believe that the knowledge learning by becoming a LEED professional is an essential skill set for architects, engineers and contractors.  Becoming a certified energy auditor and understanding residential energy efficiency is an essential skill set for contractors, remodelers, home inspectors, code officials and many more.


So how do you get the workforce development funding?  Start with our Unemployment Assistance