Local Wind Energy Renewal Program - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Local Wind Energy Renewal Program

Dr. Gabriela D. Lemus, U.S. Department of Labor Dr. Gabriela D. Lemus, U.S. Department of Labor

Maxine Ridling
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, TX -- A local program will be used as a blueprint for expanding wind energy across the nation, bringing with it hopes of new jobs.

Earlier this year, Amarillo College was awarded a $400,000 grant for their Wind Energy Renewal program.

With that money they were able to buy 2 high tech wind energy trailers that will be used by students.

Inside the trailer sits top of the line equipment giving students real world hands on experience.

On Tuesday, state leaders came to the college all the way from California to South Carolina to learn about the trailers and the program.

"What they can do is go back to their cities their states and replicate this job training opportunity primarily for farm workers and migrant workers and farm workers," Dr. Paul Matney, Amarillo College President said.

In order to enter the wind workforce, you're required to have "on the job training." AC is one of the few colleges in the country offering those select programs.

The U.S. Department of Labor says people of the Panhandle need to take advantage of this. "At the partnership level that has occurred here and taking advantage of what we see for a model of the future which is renewable energy and I think there is a lot to be learned from Amarillo that we can export to other parts of the nation that need help," Dr. Gabriela D. Lemus, U.S. Department of Labor said.

It's predicted there will be 23,000 jobs opening nationwide from now until 2016 in the wind industry.

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