Want to be in the second fastest-growing job field in America? Then you’re going to be a wind turbine technician! Last year, 107,000 workers had jobs at wind energy firms in the U.S., according to the U.S. Energy and Employment Report.
In celebration of American Wind Week, here’s a look at resources the Energy Department offers to teach kids, parents, teachers, and workers about wind energy and wind careers. You’re going to want to save this list & get swept away by wind power with us.
Wind for Schools: From kindergarten to college, students get hands-on experience in the wind industry. Colleges and Universities join Wind Application Centers and serve as project consultants to install small wind turbines at rural elementary and secondary schools. Teachers get training and classroom lessons. Since 2008 the schools’ turbines have generated 951,657 kWh of energy – enough to play video on a smartphone continuously for 136,925 years.
WINDExchange: This is your spot to learn about higher education and training programs and K-12 resources, including the Wonders of Wind teachers’ guide for K-4 and 5-8 classroom activities and a teachers’ guide for two-three weeks’ worth of content for high school students around Exploring Wind Energy.
Collegiate Wind Competition: This annual national event challenges interdisciplinary teams of undergraduate students to design solutions to complex wind energy projects. Build, design, test, run market research, develop your business, and try your hand at marketing/communications. Watch our Blades of Glory mini-documentary and you won’t want to miss out.
Wind Career Map: Convinced to join the fun? Get over to this site, where you can explore an expanding universe of wind energy occupations, and plot your next steps to get the high-quality training necessary to launch your career.
Get Inspired: One of the best ways to learn about wind energy is to learn about the people behind it. For instance, you can read our interview with Caroline Draxl, a senior researcher at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory National Wind Technology Center. Trained in meteorology, Caroline researches weather models and how data from multiple geographic scales can be used to inform wind energy forecasts.