Learn about the Skills Needed in Green Jobs

by Teri Fritsma

O*NET, the authoritative national source of occupation information, has a new website devoted to green occupations.  O*NET collects skill data on 800+ occupations, so the new website is a great place  (in fact, the only place) to find comprehensive information on what skills are needed in green jobs.  To view skill information, to the green home page, then click on the Online Search tab.  Then  choose a green sector to view information about occupations in the sector.

Green vs. Energy Jobs: How Do They Fit Together?

by Alessia Leibert

What’s the difference between a green job and an energy job?  

A common misperception is that all green jobs are in the energy industry or all energy jobs are green. But this is not the case. It is true that the most common place to find a green job is in renewable energy generation or other energy-related industries, but energy careers can only truly be considered “green”  if they primarily engage in the following activities: 

It’s Easy Being Green: Career Advice from a Green Copywriter

by Teri Fritsma

Green marketing is a new and emerging career field — so new, in fact, that there’s not much standard information on wages, skill requirements, or growth projections yet.   If you’re interested in going into this field, or another new and emerging occupation, how can you learn about it?  One way is to talk to people who are already working in the field.  I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Anne Michelsen, green copywriter and co-owner of  Marathon Renewable Energy in Wasau, Wisconsin.  During our conversation, Michelsen offered some great advice for green career seekers.


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Interested in sustainability and the environment?

by Shirley Fenlason

Sustainability and the environment are hot topics these days. Have you thought about turning this interest into an education choice? Inside Higher Ed just published “Schools of Sustainability, Colleges of the Environment” highlighting universities that are establishing colleges or programs in these multi-disciplinary areas. Green and energy degrees incorporate diverse fields of study for students and prepare them for careers in a variety of industries. The report gives examples of such program options including those at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Their degrees include ecosystems and human impact, business management with a specialization in sustainable business, and environmental design, policy, and planning. You can also check out examples in Section 1 of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education‘s most recent report that highlights 66, new-in 2008 “sustainability-focused academic programs.”


So what programs are available in Minnesota?

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Interested in a clean energy career? What training is available in Minnesota?

by Shirley Fenlason

As Teri mentioned in an earlier post, renewable energy growth is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). I read The Pew Charitable Trusts' recently-released report on "The Clean Energy Economy" and found some encouraging job-related information. It found that from 1997 to 2007, the clean energy job national growth rate was 9.1%, compared to a total job growth rate of 3.7%. According to Pew, "the clean energy economy is poised for explosive growth." Clean energy refers to energy from sources that are environmentally friendly, like wind, solar, hydro, and geothermal.

So what are clean energy occupations? Continue reading

Renewable energy news

by Teri Fritsma

Did you know that the field of renewable energy could add more than a million new jobs by the year 2025?  But what exactly is renewable energy? It’s a broad label that includes energy developed from sustainable sources, such as:


  • Wind
  • Solar (energy from the sun)
  • Geothermal (energy from the heat of the earth)
  • Hydropower (power derived from moving water)
  • Biomass (e.g., wood products or cow manure)
  • Hydrogen (an energy carrier that moves energy from one place to another)


The “renewable energy” label can also include new cleaner techniques in the more traditional forms of energy production, like gas, oil, or coal.  Growth in all these sectors is likely to create demand for both green and traditional workers. 


Interested in exploring opportunities in this area?  Stay tuned for ISEEK’s new section focused on careers in Energy.  The section will include careers in renewable as well as traditional energy fields.  It will debut in early July.