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chris's blog

Celebrate Energy Independence this 4th of July!

Posted on June 30, 2014
Dear Friends and Alumni of SEI,

Happy Fourth of July! Here in Paonia, Colorado, home of SEI’s headquarters, our little community is transformed. Flags line the streets, there’s a parade through our  downtown, and a carnival in town park with lots of contests, including coal shoveling. Everyone comes out in force (and in red, white and blue) to celebrate America’s Independence.

What if July 4th also became synonymous with Energy Independence? What if we celebrated the day when all people, regardless of socioeconomic status, would have access to clean, affordable, ...
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SEI Teams up with Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Posted on June 9, 2014
SEI's Solar In the Schools Outreach Program Teams up with Colorado Parks and Wildlife Teaching Environments Naturally Program

K-12 Classrooms visit SEI's PV lab Facility in Paonia, Colorado  

SEI's Solar In the Schools has teamed up with Colorado Parks and Wildlife's Teaching Environmental Science Naturally (TEN) program to integrate renewable energy science and PV labs in an outdoor classroom setting for K-12 students in Delta County. The TEN program assists teachers in taking their students outdoors for academically powerful field trips and to connect students to ...
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Pacheco Teams with Solar Energy International (SEI) to Offer GSA Schedule Solar Training

Posted on May 6, 2014
Pacheco Company has teamed with Solar Energy International (SEI) to provide Renewable Energy educational classes on Pacheco Company U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) schedule GS07F-0286W.  Class times and schedules procured off GSA Schedule can be viewed on http://www.solarenergy.org.

Pacheco Company is a service-disabled, veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB). The GSA establishes long-term government-wide contracts with commercial firms to provide access to millions of commercial products and services at volume discount pricing. 

Pacheco Company is a ...
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SEI's Online Campus Gets New Features

Posted on April 30, 2014
SEI uses the Modular Object Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment (MOODLE) for our online learning software. The software is known as a learning management system (LMS) and is very popular within higher education around the world.  MOODLE is known as a tool for creating online learning opportunities that is both fun and engaging for the learner.  SEI uses MOODLE for our online courses and is proud to support the growing community of online training programs all over the world using this technology. Our online courses are also prerequisites to our popular and well-attended PV lab ...
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SEI's Solar Professionals Academy of the Americas (SPAA) Goes to D.C.

Posted on April 30, 2014
On April 16th, SEI visited the nation's capital to present on the successful collaboration strategies that were implemented through the Solar Professionals Academy of the Americas (SPAA). In 2013 SEI received funding from the U.S. State Department through a program called the Energy & Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA). With this funding SEI set out to train 50 people, representing countries, communities, and organizations throughout Central America and Mexico to design, install and maintain solar PV systems in conjunction with business training and mentoring to equip the ...
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Ed Franklin - Passion for Solar Energy

Posted on March 26, 2014
What is your passion project? What is the project that gets you excited and makes your work worthwhile? For Ed Franklin, PV is his passion project.

Ed is an Associate Professor of Agricultural Education at the University of Arizona. He teaches courses in welding, machinery management, electrical wiring, irrigation, and turf management, and integrates his passion project, PV, into almost all of these topics. For Ed, PV is a vehicle to teach the basic concepts of math and science. Classroom theory, such as Ohm’s Law, is applied when students design and install PV systems at ...
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SEI Offers IAEI Inspector Trainings

Posted on March 26, 2014
IAEI Inspector Trainings
Last month, SEI trained close to 200 inspectors through the Solar Instructor Training Network, a program of the Department of Energy’s Sunshot Initiative. This network, of which SEI is a regional provider, promotes and provides training and expertise in the installation of solar technologies. In addition to training and working with community colleges and universities that offer solar programs, the network also provides training to solar inspectors to ensure high-quality installations.

SEI Instructors Brian Mehalic, Rebekah Hren, Ryan Mayfield, and ...
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SEI Alumni Highlight: Rebecca Offensend - Strategy Director, SunSaluter

Posted on February 26, 2014
by Rebecca Offensend - Strategy Director, SunSaluter - SEI Alumna

At this time last year, I knew nothing about solar energy. But 9 months ago, I was brought on as the Strategy Director for SunSaluter, a social enterprise tackling solar energy efficiency and clean water. The SunSaluter product is a solar tracker designed for the developing world that uses the power of gravity and water to rotate solar panels and increase efficiency, helping users get more energy from their panels.

When I started my job, I was nervous that my lack of knowledge about solar energy would ...
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SEI Transfers Solar Rollers to Startup Nonprofit Energetics Education

Posted on February 26, 2014
The Solar Rollers program, in which high school teams design, build and race sophisticated solar-powered remote control cars, is transferring from Solar Energy International to Energetics Education, a startup non-profit based in Carbondale. The program is the only one of its kind in the US and was successfully trialed in 2013 with four teams from the Roaring Fork Valley. Solar Rollers recently won the Excellence in Secondary Education award from the Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education.

SEI is using 2014 Solar Rollers funding to hire Energetics Education as a contractor to ...
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SEI PV351L Alumni Creates Solar Snow Blower

Posted on February 26, 2014
by Dean Iandoli - President at Quabbin Solar - SEI Alumni

First of all, the PV351L course in Nevada was very, very good.  Not only was it really informative, but it had a very good vibe to it and we credit your instructors with that. Thanks again to SEI for such a successful advanced course!

The Invention of the Solar Snow Blower

"Oh don't worry, it'll just slide off."  That's what I heard over and over again as I was building my first solar farm in Massachusetts.  I own two different 2MW solar generating facilities in central MA.  They are ...
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