Business Manager
Solar Energy International
• Take classes at Solar Energy International. Workshops are offered in solar, thermal, green building, and even hydro technologies. Classes are offered in twelve locations around the US.
• Roofers can improve their skills by taking classes in solar energy installation.
• Solar energy installation and commercial size energy efficiency projects are the hottest areas of green technology.
Solar Energy International has been providing education in solar and other renewable energy technologies for 20 years. They have become one of the premiere institutions for accredited renewable energy workshops and offer classes in a number of locations.

Business manager Sandy Pickard highlighted the important work this non-profit does through their educational mission. Solar Energy International has expanded to include workshops in solar electric, solar thermal, micro-hydro, and wind energy. Classes are also offered online.
VP Sales And Marketing
Native Energy
• Look at social responsibility positions in large companies. Many companies are concerned about our energy future and their public image. Corporate responsibility positions will continue to be an area of continued job growth.
• Ceres (ceres.org) is a good place to look for companies interested in sustainability. BSR (The Business of a Better World) is an extensive network of sustainable companies and a good resource for job seekers.
• Check out schools with green and sustainability programs. The University of Vermont, Middlebury College, and St. Michael's College have excellent environmental programs.
Native Energy is a developer and seller of carbon credits. Carbon credits allow for the funding of renewable energy projects and reduce the amount of energy required from fossil fuels. When a company buys carbon offsets they are funding a project such as a wind farm or a methane digester and thus offsetting the effect of their own pollution. In the last 10 years, Native Energy clients have helped build a remarkable 48 projects including wind, biogas, and solar.
Forest Restoration Coordinator
Trees Atlanta
• Landscape architecture, forestry, and urban planning majors are good backgrounds for work at a conservation organization. The Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources at University of Georgia is a great place to study. Emory University also has a well regarded program.
• Volunteering is a great way to get your foot in the door in an environmental organization. Standard office skills and an understanding of office software are also useful.
• GIS (Geographic Information Systems) is becoming very important in Forestry jobs. Take classes that teach GIS software such as Arcview
Trees Atlanta has distributed more than 75,000 shade trees and cared for more than 100,000 since the organization was founded in 1985. Trees Atlanta uses a network of volunteers to complete this task. As forest restoration coordinator for Trees Atlanta, Blake Watkins, has an interesting perspective on green careers and good knowledge of Forestry in the Atlanta area.
Deputy Director
Georgia Conservation Voters
• Get a solid background in science. Take classes in environmental policy, biology, and political science.
• The best way to get into an organization like the Georgia League of Conservation Voters is through an internship. It might be beneficial to choose a larger city that has numerous internship opportunities.
• Savannah Tech's Photovoltaic Systems Program is one of the first in the nation. The school offers solar energy installation and repair training.
Georgia Conservation Voters works to elect leaders with conservation values. Emily Thomas, Interim Executive Director, explained that, like similar environmental organizations in other states, Georgia Conservation Voters engages primarily in political activities. They produce a legislative score card that rates Georgia state politicians on various conservation issues. They also hold a legislative summit to address upcoming conservation issues. Georgia is generally a conservative state where it is sometimes more difficult to enact conservation legislation. Emily believes that significant conservation change in Georgia will probably require federal legislation.
Policy Fellow, Greenprints Program Assistant
• Inroads to green building: if you are interested in developing a career in green building, Southface is developing an online learning system. Their Basics of Building Science is a good introductory course, and is an introductory class now offered at no charge through its online training site, www.southfaceinstitute.org at this time.
• Southface offers talented researchers the opportunity to develop projects and conduct research using the 24/7 performance data it is collecting from its LEED Platinum 'Eco Office'. It expects much of this research will fall into uncharted territory, and may result in valid new building performance observations and opportunities that benefit the larger green building community.
• For professionals engaged in green policy and research, and careers that have elements in the growing field of sustainability, Southface moderates the monthly Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable, an excellent networking event.
Atlanta has a long history of producing strong non-profit organizations, and on the green building and sustainable design front, Southface is Atlanta's success story. As a state contractor for workforce weatherization training and one of 36 organizations authorized nationally to facilitate LEED certification of sustainable building projects in both commercial and residential development, Southface's staff of 70 has extended its influence across much of Atlanta's developing green economy. Their EarthCraft program has served as a model for sustainable homes and light commercial buildings, and has spread to organizations in several neighboring states. Its green building classes, offered at Southface's facilities, have proven so successful that Policy Fellow, Giselle Sebag, says, "sometimes we can't keep up with demand." Giselle also helps lead Southface's annual Greenprints Conference and Tradeshow, an excellent networking opportunity for the regional green community that brings together leading national authorities on sustainability in the "built environment" for two days each year in Atlanta. She says Atlanta's BeltLine, one of the largest-ever light rail projects in the country, will connect much of the city's sprawling landscape in the coming years. This development will likely spur new green building projects in both residential and commercial construction and renovation. Expect Atlanta to develop an excellent green job market as large-scale projects like the BeltLine ramp up in coming years.
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