The United States is among the world’s largest and fastest growing wind energy markets. In fact, wind energy is now the number one source of new U.S. electricity generation capacity – representing 43% of all new electric additions in 2012 and accounting for $25 billion in U.S. investment.
To help the nation’s future scientists, engineers, and entrepreneurs continue to advance the wind industry, the Energy Department (DOE) established the first ever Department of Energy Collegiate Wind Competition. The competition will be held May 5–7 alongside the American Wind Energy Association’s (AWEA) WINDPOWER® 2014 Conference & Exhibition at Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas.
The competition, which aims to cultivate wind-specific interests and skills among the next generation of industry leaders, will feature 10 teams of students who will design and construct lightweight, portable wind turbines intended to power small electronic devices. During the competition event, teams will present to a diverse panel of experts on current market drivers and deployment opportunities for the wind industry, pitch their business plans to industry leaders, and put their turbines to the test in an on-site wind tunnel.
"Wind energy is one of the fastest-growing electricity sources in the United States. The Collegiate Wind Competition is designed to expose students to the multi-disciplinary nature of the wind industry and give them an opportunity to engage with industry leaders," said Jose Zayas, Director of DOE’s Wind and Water Power Technologies Office.
"We’re excited to partner with DOE to host this exciting event. Bringing the Collegiate Wind Competition to WINDPOWER will provide unparalleled opportunities for students to interact with leaders in wind energy and give our industry a chance to meet and engage with some of the nation’s best and brightest young people," said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA.
The following 10 schools successfully competed for selection to enter this inaugural competition:
- Boise State University
- California Maritime Academy
- Colorado School of Mines
- James Madison University (VA)
- Kansas State University
- Northern Arizona University
- Pennsylvania State University
- University of Alaska Fairbanks
- University of Kansas
- University of Massachusetts Lowell
Visit the DOE Collegiate Wind Competition website at wind.energy.gov/windcompetition for more information. Sponsorship opportunities for the inaugural Department of Energy Collegiate Wind Competition are available. Please contact Emily Jorgensen at the Wind Energy Foundation at 202-383-2543 or firstname.lastname@example.org.