DOE Starts Fellowship Program to Advance Community Solar
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Energy is looking for energy professionals to work with state and regional organizations to make community solar subscriptions more accessible to low-income households.
The fellowship, which will require relocating to the District of Columbia, Illinois or New Mexico, is open to professionals in fields relevant to community engagement, communications and education, energy affordability and clean energy.
Successful candidates will have demonstrated interest and experience in renewable energy, community engagement, data analysis and coding, and state policies and programs.
The opportunity is open to candidates with bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degrees, as well as established professionals with relevant post-degree experience, and fellows will receive a stipend, health benefits and an educational allowance.
Once chosen, the fellows will work with their specific host institution — Illinois Power Agency (Chicago, Illinois), Department of Energy and Environment (Washington, D.C.), or New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (Santa Fe, New Mexico) — to make community solar subscriptions that include verified savings and consumer protections more accessible to households participating in government-run low-income support programs.
Fellows will assist community solar and Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program offices in piloting the tool, which may include:
1) Supporting the management and verification of community solar projects included through the tool.
2) Supporting LIHEAP administrator education and capacity needs.
3) Creating and providing education and outreach to support low-income household enrollment in community solar.
4) Developing a program guidebook and other materials for implementation of the tool beyond the pilot regions.
The fellowship will enable candidates to spend up to two years working at host organizations in participating pilot regions, beginning in early May 2023.
The D.C. Department of Energy and the Environment is specifically seeking a fellow with expertise in data management and analysis, and program evaluation using performance data and indicators, with preference for coding experience in R, Python or Strata.
The Illinois Power Agency and the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission are both seeking fellows with experience in stakeholder engagement and community outreach and education.
Fellowship candidates must indicate which host institution they want to be matched with in their applications. Interested candidates will submit a written application, and the DOE and host institutions will select finalists for interviews. The DOE will make the final selections and facilitate the process of matching host institutions and fellows.