February 26, 2018

Illinois solar jobs group holding large check

The Cypress Creek team joins (L to R) KCC President Dr. John Avendano, landowner Jeff Geel, landowner Pat Geel, landowner Jennifer Conn (Geel), KCC VP-Finance and Administration & Board Treasurer Vicki Gardner, Executive Director of the KCC Foundation Kelly Myers to celebrate our new jobs program.

Cypress Creek Renewables today announced the launch of a partnership with Kankakee Community College to strengthen Illinois’ energy workforce and grow the state’s clean energy economy.

The initiative, which includes a $10,000 investment by Cypress Creek, will provide scholarships and tuition assistance for students interested in solar job training, with a focus on training women and veterans and promoting a diverse and inclusive industry. Kankakee Community College currently offers a two-year electrical technology program with a focus on renewable energy and three renewable energy certificate options.

“Creating paths to well-paying jobs is a priority,” said Kankakee Community College President Dr. John Avendano. “Solar energy will be a bigger part of Illinois’ energy mix, and through our partnership with Cypress Creek, KCC graduates will go to work doing what they love. It’s a point of pride that we’ve prepared them for a bright future.”

Illinois is currently home to more than 3,500 solar professionals and jobs in the industry are set to grow dramatically as the state adds nearly 3,000 megawatts of new solar—enough to power nearly 400,000 homes—as a part of the Future Energy Jobs Act.

Illinois solar jobs speaker at podium

Cypress Creek Senior Developer Scott Novack speaks at Kankakee Community College about our new workforce development partnership.

Timothy Nugent, President and CEO of the Economic Alliance of Kankakee County, said, “We’re proud of Kankakee Community College’s award-winning and nationally certified electrical technology program. As companies like Cypress Creek look to invest in solar projects in our community and across the state, our workforce will be ready.”

Cypress Creek is developing solar projects throughout Illinois and hopes to begin construction on about a dozen projects in the state early next year.

John Geel family, Kankakee County landowners with land leased for proposed solar farms, said, “As third generation operators of our family farm, we care deeply about our local community and the success of Kankakee County’s agricultural industry. Cypress Creek Renewables has provided our family the opportunity to generate clean, affordable power for our neighbors and to create new jobs throughout the region. We’re proud to support the partnership between Cypress Creek Renewables and Kankakee Community College to promote a diverse and inclusive solar industry.”

“We are deeply committed to bringing low-cost, clean energy to Illinois and we need a skilled, local workforce to accomplish our goals,” added Scott Novack, Senior Developer, Cypress Creek Renewables. “Our partnership with Kankakee Community College will help ensure we have access to the right people—now and in the future—as we build out our growing pipeline of solar projects in the state.”

This partnership with Kankakee Community College is a part of Cypress Creek’s workforce development initiative. The company’s aim is to strengthen the U.S. energy workforce through proactive investment in job training and workforce development. Cypress Creek has previously announced partnerships with Hudson Valley Community College in New York and Greenville Technical College in South Carolina.

About Kankakee Community College: Kankakee Community College is an accredited two-year college which awards associate degrees and certificates of completion. KCC prepares students both to transfer to four-year colleges and to enter the workforce. The college also offers continuing education courses and certification training, literacy programs, English as a Second Language and GED preparation. The KCC mission is “Enhancing quality of life through learning.” The college has a Riverfront Campus in Kankakee, South Extension Center in Watseka, North Extension Center in Bradley and Manufacturing and Industrial Technology Center in Kankakee.


Read More from the Cypress Creek Renewables Blog:

Cypress Creek Renewables Announces New York Solar Job Training Initiative 

Cypress Creek Renewables Announces Solar Job Training Initiative in South Carolina

Solar Power Jobs Outlook Good