Solar Forward Welcomes Graduate Fellow, Eryka Thorley

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Master in Environmental Management scholar Eryka Thorley joins the Solar Forward group to assist create a community for solar training and outreach

Paonia, CO – When Solar Forward first started a partnership with Western Colorado University (WCU) of Gunnison, CO in 2018, it couldn’t have predicted the standard and expertise that the Solar Forward Fellows would convey to creating this system. Over the previous three years, the Master in Environmental Management (MEM) program of WCU has supplied fellowship candidates to Solar Forward to broaden the graduate program’s experiential studying and assist develop Solar Forward for extra communities throughout Colorado and past.

Solar Forward is a rural financial improvement program from Solar Energy International (SEI). This outreach program promotes holistic solar market improvement, a part of which is a gaggle buy-in program known as Solarize. Since its pilot in Delta County in 2015, Solar Forward has helped 8 communities throughout Colorado set up over 2.8MW of latest solar on 378 residential and industrial roofs. With the brand new fellow, Eryka Thorley’s assist, Solar Forward will proceed to develop its impression by making a community for Solar Forward communities looking for sources for solar market improvement and training.

Eryka’s background in anthropology, information assortment, evaluation, and communication will assist develop sensible instruments for Solar Forward communities. As properly as a background in environmental well being and science communication, Eryka can also be an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) and American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) teacher. She clearly has intensive expertise speaking technical ideas in an enticing method, which is able to improve Solar Forward’s program choices.

“I am excited to be part of rural solar development through Solar Forward and Solar Energy International.  The Solarize program was a great success in my own community and I am thrilled to continue working with Solar Forward and their skilled team.” Eryka Thorley

Over the years, grasp’s college students have contributed to the Solar Forward program by coordinating each the Gunnison County Solarize program in 2019 and the Nederland Solarize program in 2021. Through instructional occasions and outreach for the group buy-in program, Gunnison County elevated its put in solar capability by 24%. The Nederland program enhanced its outreach by working with the native environmental training middle, Wild Bear Nature Center. It is the progressive approaches and insights from grasp’s college students which make the Solar Forward program flourish.

“The partnership between Solar Forward and the master’s program at WCU has greatly increased Solar Forward’s capacity and expertise,” mentioned Solar Forward Program Manager, Ellen Ross. “These graduate students are creative and understand the significance of a holistic perspective in planning solar markets.”

The interdisciplinary Master in Environmental Management program offers Solar Forward with fellows from numerous fields and the methods pondering and undertaking administration abilities essential to innovate options for holistic solar planning. The holistic strategy from Solar Forward towards creating solar markets entails workforce improvement, training, equitable entry, in addition to financial incentives.

“Access to affordable, reliable energy is key to providing a just and sustainable pathway to economic development and opportunity globally.  We seek SEI Fellows that will complete projects that empower people in the United States or throughout the world,” as expressed by MEM director Dr. Jessica Young and the Sustainable and Resilient Communities Track director Dr. Ricardo Vazquez-Perales.

Solar Forward is accepting functions on a rolling foundation for group companions. For extra info, contact the Solar Forward Program Manager Ellen Ross at [email protected] or name 970-527-7657, extension 116.

About Solar Energy International: SEI was based in 1991 as a nonprofit instructional group with the aim of empowering college students, alumni, and companions to broaden a various, inclusive, well-trained and educated solar electrical energy workforce. SEI’s goal is to advertise sustainable financial development, mitigate local weather change, and help energy independence.

About Western Colorado University’s Master in Environmental Management Program: The Master in Environmental Management (MEM) is knowledgeable terminal diploma, particularly targeted on the content material understanding and strategies essential to handle environmental organizations, public lands businesses, and communities in the direction of sustainable and resilient options. The program emphasizes entrepreneurial and systems-thinking approaches to environmental points related to growing local weather disturbances, pure useful resource calls for, and socio-economic insecurity. The MEM affords a “hybrid” studying surroundings for full-residency college students rooted within the studying laboratories of Gunnison County, mixed with a low-residency choice for choose environmental professionals from everywhere in the world.

Solar Forward information highlights from 2021:

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