October 30, 2015

Investing in Youth, Our Future Clean Energy Leaders

A year ago, Janice Bautista was entering her senior year at the Boston Latin School and didn’t know much about clean energy.

Today, she’s preparing to enter her freshman year at Suffolk University in Boston, where she plans to major in biochemistry.

Janice shared her story with Congressman Joe Kennedy, Energy and Environmental Affairs Sec. Rick Sullivan, Dept. of Energy Resources Commissioner Mark Sylvia, myself and educators on Thursday at Bristol Community College as part of an announcement of $450,000 for clean energy educational programs across the Commonwealth.

Through a program operated Boston Youth Environmental Network and partially funded by our Workforce Capacity Building program, she spent last summer and this spring interning at a Boston clean energy company, where she learned real world work experience and about the opportunities presented in the clean energy field.

We also heard from Tabitha Hobbs, an environmental technology teacher at Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School, where a MassCEC grant was used to help strengthen the school’s clean energy curriculum.

Tabitha spoke of the school’s Bio Bus, a mobile sustainability classroom, and how the students had responded enthusiastically to the clean energy courses, which will help prepare them for jobs in the booming clean energy sector.

With such strong results already coming out of last year’s awardees, I’m excited to see what this year’s programs – run by Bristol Community College, Northeastern University, Cape Cod Community College, the Merrimack Valley Workforce Investment Board and the Boston Private Industry Council - have in store.