Energy employment continues to grow in Connecticut. But hiring managers say they are struggling to find a workforce skilled in advanced renewable energy technologies, and the state’s flagship university is responding.
“Connecticut has been behind in supporting our needs,” said Sridhar Kanuri, vice president of research and engineering at Doosan Fuel Cell America, based in a suburb of Hartford. Doosan is wooing graduates from the University of Massachusetts — which offers an energy engineering program with option tracks in renewable energy — and engineering schools from the West Coast, whose students bring skills in managing new technologies in the green space.
Currently, only 10 percent of Doosan’s hiring is from within Connecticut.
“We need engineers trained in the energy area,” Kanuri emphasized.
The University of Connecticut this fall will expand its newly-launched program to train working professionals in implementing clean technologies across industry verticals. Earlier this year, UConn kicked off its new, two-year Master of Science in Advanced Manufacturing for Energy Systems degree with a $1.25 million federal grant from the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy.
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