Green Master’s Program Unveiled In Ohio

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Going green certainly has its benefits.

In Ohio, the state’s very first Master’s program in clean and renewable energy is set to begin, a collaboration of several Buckeye state colleges and universities thanks to the recent approval of that state’s college degreeBoard of Regents.

“As a leading Ohio solar company, we consider this program to be good news for us, the U.S. solar industry and the state,” said Carol Campbell, First Solar vice president of human resources. “We applaud this effort to develop talent that will support the state’s leading role in the fast-growing renewable energy industry.” Tempe, Ariz.-based First Solar operates customer support and manufacturing operations in Perrysburg, Ohio, near Toledo.

The four schools participating are the University of Dayton, Wright State University, Central State University and the Air Force Institute of Technology who have joined together to launch the two-year program. Beginning in January 2009, students can enroll in the program on a full-time or part-time basis.

“This is another example of the world-class collaborations in the Miami Valley that will move Ohio’s economy forward,” Fingerhut said. “Students will graduate from this master’s program with the leadership, management, research and technical skills needed to help grow one of the most critical industries of the 21st century — clean and renewable energy and advanced energy systems. The program has the potential to be a regional academic center of excellence where new ideas are incubated, developed, tested and refined.”

The program will help develop more engineers, but its will also help companies to hire individuals with the knowledge to develop stable, clean and economical energy sources.

“It is important for Ohio companies working in fuel cells and other energy sources to have access to a qualified workforce,” said Scott Swartz, chief technology officer of NexTech Materials. “Having these students trained in Ohio makes it easier for these companies to recruit the best possible workforce.” NexTech is based north of Columbus in Lewis Center, Ohio.

The program will operate within the University of Dayton’s mechanical and aerospace engineering department and Wright State University’s mechanical and materials engineering department. Students will receive a UD or a Wright State degree, depending where they enroll. The Air Force Institute of Technology and Central State University also will offer classes and instructors but will not grant degrees.

Classes will focus on development of energy-reducing design techniques, renewable energy and manufacturing systems, and better forms of solar energy, fuel cells and biofuels.

Source: The University of Dayton

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Categories: Academics