Dimension Renewable Energy Celebrates Inaugural Graduating Class of their Central Valley Solar Workforce Development Program

July 19, 2023

Central Valley students are on their way to jobs in California's growing clean energy sector.

Dimension Renewable Energy (“Dimension”) joins GRID Alternatives and Self Help Enterprises to congratulate the 11 Central Valley students who have completed Dimension’s inaugural solar training program that will lead to jobs in California’s growing green economy.  

Community solar is poised to meet California’s growing energy and reliability needs over the next decade and Dimension is committed to making sure the communities that host our projects benefit from this growth. Through our partnerships with GRID Alternatives and community organizations like Self Help Enterprises, Dimension is working to localize the benefits that its community solar projects create.

GRID Alternatives’ Solar Installation Basics Training (IBT) 200 program creates clean energy career pathways. Participants receive five weeks of intense, hands-on training in solar installation, and upon successful completion of IBT 200, participants are awarded solar industry skill certificates. Trainees also have the opportunity to showcase their newly developed skills to potential employers during the final week of training.

"Connecting our trainees to job opportunities in community solar is a critical step in advancing equitable access to California's rapidly growing renewable energy industry," said Dan Dumovich, Director of Strategic Initiatives at GRID Alternatives. "We are excited to see these students build careers in solar by working on projects that in turn directly benefit the communities where they live and work."

Workforce development programs are transformative.  Graduating students in this cohort came to GRID Alternatives from other careers, high school vocational programs, and the criminal justice system. And for half of the students completing the course, the IBT 200 program is just the first step in their training journey. Under the unique partnership between Dimension and GRID, these students will transition to Dimension’s community solar projects.  In the coming weeks, they will receive further paid training on-site as they launch their solar careers.  

“At GRID we believe that we can grow the trainees’ skills to speak louder than their backgrounds," said Karina Gonzalez, Co-Executive Director of GRID Alternatives Central Valley. “We want their work to speak for itself.” 

Together, workforce development programs and community solar projects transform communities.  Dimension’s community solar projects remove barriers to access so that low-income households, renters, and those who cannot install solar on their homes can subscribe to the clean energy produced by a shared, offsite solar facility.  Even better, community solar subscriptions reduce electric bills.  

“Savings from community solar help low-income families with their everyday living, put money in the bank, or just have a little breathing room at the end of the month.” said Melynda Metheney, Project Tech at Self Help Enterprises, a community outreach partner working with GRID Alternatives and Dimension. 

“Dimension is excited to expand our community initiatives across California.  We want to bring workforce training, educational programming, and energy savings to all the communities where we operate.” said Sam Youneszadeh, Dimension’s Chief Development Officer.  “We and our partners look forward to welcoming many more graduates to the green workforce.”

About GRID Alternatives Central Valley:

As part of GRID Alternatives national network, GRID Alternatives Central Valley leads teams of volunteers and job trainees in installing solar electric systems for low-income families living in San Joaquin County to the north through Kern County in the south. Their installations and trainings provide families with needed savings and give workers hands-on experience to help them find jobs in the green-tech economy.

About Self Help Enterprises:

Self-Help Enterprises is a nationally recognized community development organization whose mission is to work together with low-income families to build and sustain healthy homes and communities. Since 1965, Self-Help Enterprises’ efforts have touched the lives of over 65,000 families in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley. Their Sustainable Energy Solutions team focuses on connecting disadvantaged communities to resources that provide access to affordable energy and clean transportation infrastructure.

About Dimension Renewable Energy

Dimension is a leading developer and operator of community solar solutions. For the communities in which we invest, our fleet of solar projects delivers clean energy, local jobs, tax revenue, and savings, alongside other benefits including workforce development and educational opportunities. We are a turnkey provider of these solutions: from site acquisition and development to construction and operation, we are a steady and reliable presence in our communities.

Ground mount solar energy project.

Contact the Dimension team

Dimension is always looking for community and landowner partners to spread the benefits of community solar to those who need it most.