Ambassador Energy launches its first installation team composed entirely of U.S. military veterans. The three-man team is installing systems throughout Southern California. Ambassador Energy College will continue to offer their certification course one week a month at no cost to qualified veterans.
Veterans have unfortunately had it rough recently. Problems with VA hospitals have still been surfacing, with the latest report showing thousands of veterans may have died due to delayed care. They also continue to suffer from the highest unemployment rate in the nation. Fortunately, solar has proven a bright spot in this gloomy news. Veterans make up almost 10% of the solar workforce — and solar companies are taking the initiative to help, and hire, more veterans.
Ambassador Energy College is working to achieve this by partnering with nonprofit organization The Veteran Asset (TVA), whose mission is to train and place U.S. military veterans at no cost to the veterans. The training consists of a five-day solar PV design and installation course followed by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners’ NABCEP Entry Level exam. It was provided to 17 veterans in total, with three coming to work for Ambassador Energy. Ambassador Energy College and TVA will continue to offer the course one week per month, at minimum, to qualified veterans.
The three-man team went through further training with Ambassador Energy’s senior installation crews. They are now being deployed throughout southern California installing solar systems.
“We are already seeing the quality that they bring to AE,” said Steve Fulgham, CEO of Ambassador Energy. “These vets are proving to be our installation department’s ‘silver bullet’, as they come in with very high skill sets. They also work hard, set great examples for other employees, and, last but not least, customers love them! We are very proud to have them in our AE family and honored to be putting our military veterans to work in our exciting industry.”
In addition to receiving highly skilled employees, Ambassador Energy is also able to benefit from the Riverside County Workforce Investment Act’s On-the-Job Training, for which many U.S. military veterans qualify. After 90 days of a veteran’s employment, the employer is reimbursed for half of the veteran’s hourly wages.
“We plan to hire more vets and keep these three guys for as long as they will have us,” continued Fulgham. “As TVA puts it – the veterans are an asset to employers. What’s not to like about doing the right thing for our country, and being on the receiving end of an asset?”