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SEI Celebrates Over 20 Years of MC Hammer Pants and Solar PV Curriculum Development

Posted on May 30, 2013
Grab your VIP pass –Here’s a Behind the Scenes Look at SEI’s Curriculum Development Process
Blog by Laura Walters - SEI PV Curriculum Team Member
Want a sneak peak into the major work that goes into keeping SEI’s solar electric curriculum the best in the country (and possibly the world)?!? Here is your chance to see where some of your tuition dollars go and why SEI classes are worth every cent.

Did you know that SEI’s solar electric design and installation curriculum has been evolving for over twenty years? Yeah, twenty – that goes back to the days of MC ...
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SEI Surpasses 30,000 Alumni and Students - Your Stories Are Our Stories!

Posted on May 30, 2013
“Your Stories are Our Stories…30,000 and Counting”
By Kathy Swartz, Executive Director

During our recent annual count of the number of alumni, we surpassed the 30,000th student who has taken training from Solar Energy International. As a visual reference, if you put everyone of our current and former students into Harvard's Football Stadium - it would fill to 100% capacity. (See photo above)

My favorite fortune cookie fortune of all time is… “Customer service is like taking a bath; you have to keep doing it.” We take customer service quite seriously—it ...
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SEI and Saudi Arabia Solar Industry Association (SASIA) Create Partnership for Professional Solar Training in the Middle East

Posted on May 30, 2013
Solar Energy International (SEI) is pleased to partner with the Saudi Arabia Solar Industry Association (SASIA) to provide professional solar PV training to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and surrounding region.  This training partnership will leverage SEI's decades of technical training experience and expertise.   The goal of this partnership is to establish a highly trained solar professional workforce with a focus on safety and highly efficient PV system design and installation methods throughout the region.  

This hybrid training model between SEI and SASIA ...
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SEI Provides Native American Training at the Red Cloud Renewable Energy Center

Posted on May 20, 2013
SEI recently completed a 4-day training and installation class in collaboration with Lakota Solar Enterprise and Trees, Water & People.  This 4-day training, held in late March, was hosted at the Red Cloud Renewable Energy Center in Pine Ridge, SD.  The Northern Cheyenne tribe sent a bright group of young leaders from their community to this training as part a larger effort to explore sustainable economic solutions to replace fossil fuel development on their lands.  

In addition to this aspect, the National Wildlife Federation, who has been integral in supporting the ...
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NREL Hosts SEI's Solar Rollers RC Car Race

Posted on May 20, 2013
SEI's Solar Rollers RC Car Race a High-speed Success

The green flag waved at 11:30 am to start the one-hour race, which is a long enough period to test the overall energy efficiency of each car and its renewable energy generation system. From the very start one thing was evident: these cars were fast. The circuit was about 50 meters in length and within a minute or so all four cars were turning laps of less than 9 seconds. The fastest lap of the day was 8 seconds flat.

While the teams had each done testing on smooth tennis courts and parking lots, it soon became ...
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After Your SEI Solar Training in Paonia, Colorado - Explore Colorado's Wild Side

Posted on April 19, 2013
Blog by Tawnya Parker - SEI Training and Workshop Coordinator

Depending on the time of year you come to Paonia for a lab week you may have the opportunity to partake in a wide range of events or activities, from weekly free concerts in the Park, to touring numerous local wineries, and fishing in trout-filled waters. U-pick at the organic fruit orchards (apricots, cherries, peaches, pears or apples) is popular, and our friends at Delicious Orchards will lend you a basket to go out and pick or pour you a glass of local wine in their tasting room ...
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Must Reads for the Renewable Energy Insider

Posted on April 19, 2013
Blog by By Phil Friedman - SEI Online Course Manager 

Have you read a good book lately?  I might be biased, but SEI's new Solar Electric Handbook: Photovoltaic Fundamentals and Applications is currently at the top of my list of must reads.  As online course manager and occasional online instructor for SEI, I often review and interact in the course forum conversations. Often, I notice there are comments from students and instructors about books and articles they are reading. It is great fun and interesting to see what others are reading and what people recommend. Every so ...
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Help Make SEI's Solar Rollers for High School Students a Reality

Posted on April 19, 2013
Afer 11 years of running the Solar In the Schools K-12 outreach program, we know that it takes something extraordinary to hold the attention of today’s teens, who long ago mastered cell phones but have yet to get their hands on a driver’s license. So how do we reach adolescents with vital energy efficiency lessons and hands-on renewable energy learning? Solar In the Schools may have found the answer with solar-powered radio-controlled cars - Solar Rollers.

 



 

These electromechanical contraptions are fun to build and a blast to drive, ...
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SEI's Financial Director - Paul Gibb is "Born to Be Wild" on The Solar Scooter

Posted on April 19, 2013
I installed a PV system on my barn in November and it wasn’t until May or June of the following year that I realized I had one of those “nice” problems in life – my system was outperforming the production estimates and now my newly installed net-meter was hovering in the range of -98,250 to -98,750, or 1,750 to 1,250 kilowatt-hours (kWh) less than zero!

On one hand, I was pleased to see that my 3.6 kW system of SunTech modules (yikes!) and an SMA inverter was performing so well thanks to our abundant western Colorado sunshine. On the other hand, our co-op utility, Delta ...
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Solar Energy International (SEI) Alumni Highlight - Carrie Schaffner

Posted on March 27, 2013
Before I started working for the U.S. Antarctic Program in 2005, I had only the most basic understanding of renewable energy technologies, and virtually no first hand experience. McMurdo Station basks in 24 hours of daylight for just over four months of the year, the same months during which the population swells, and yet there was nary a PV panel in sight. Over the course of several seasons, I heard a lot of unsatisfactory explanations as to why this was the case, and this motivated me to learn more. I heard about SEI from several different people in the program who had taken courses in the ...
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