Supporting community colleges in educating for and building a green economy
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Resource Center

Instructions

The Resource Center is a curated collection of information organized around 7 green economy “Sectors” and 7 “Topics.” In time, more Sectors will be added. Topics represent those areas in which educators and workforce development professionals continue to seek direction.

You can search by sector or by topic. Or across all sectors and/or all topics.

You can also perform a keyword search of all resources on the top right of this page.

Solar

The solar industry is expected to show steady growth over the coming decade largely due to rising energy prices, advances in technology through public/private partnerships and investments, and continued enactment of federal and state policies and financial incentives. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Wind

Wind power is considered a leading source of new electricity generation in the United States, with the potential of providing 20% of the nation’s energy needs by 2030. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Green Building

The green building market has expanded five fold over the last three years to a $48 billion national market—and is projected to triple in the next five years. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is considered the foundation of a vibrant and sustainable green economy, and one of the most cost effective ways to lower energy consumption, reduce operating costs, and mitigate carbon emissions. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Sustainability Education

Sustainability education refers generally to learning experiences that enable students to develop the knowledge, behaviors and skills to help create healthier ecosystems, social systems, and economies. For the purposes of the SEED Center, this includes resources to help build non-credit continuing education for the incumbent workforce and integrating sustainability curriculum into existing credit programs. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Sustainable Ag., Food & Land

The Sustainable Ag., Food & Land sector covers the areas of organic farming, horticulture, culinary art, and landscaping. This sector includes organizations and resources that integrate environmental, social and economic factors into land use, food preparation, and land specific practices in an attempt to create a more sustainable future. more >>

General Clean Tech

The General Clean Tech sector is a space for resources that encompass multiple ‘green’ sectors. Many are applicable to the broader clean economy and sustainability-related technology and will serve the general clean tech community. Resources also provide valuable information on sectors that are experiencing substantive development in the sustainability realm, like manufacturing and smart grid. more >>

Transportation and Fuels

The Transportation & Fuels sector covers the area of electric and hybrid vehicle development and maintenance, other forms of alternative and sustainable transportation, natural gas, fuel cells, battery storage, and renewable fuels sources including ethanol, biodiesel, algae, and methane. more >>

- Also see General Clean Tech for more helpful resources.

Certifications and Industry Credentials

Certainly, one of the biggest challenges facing green educators is the rapid and mostly uncoordinated emergence of green certifications and credentials. more >>
 

Curricular Materials

These resources and materials have been vetted by industry and education experts, and while not in the form of specific educator tools, will assist in creating quality curricula for your classroom. more >>

You will find more specific educator tools (e.g. syllabi, lab manuals, lesson plans, special classroom projects, equipment lists, etc.) submitted by SEED member colleges in our Curricular Materials Sharing Portal.

Employment Industry Projections

While job training providers have been quite active in past years working with local industry to define the emerging green jobs market and potential job growth areas, most still struggle to forecast accurately regional occupational demand. The U.S. Department of Labor has made recent strides toward classifying green occupations and competencies which will help communities define and track green jobs (and colleges to design appropriate education and training programs). Given the uncertain renewable energy and efficiency industry outlook, and rapidly changing technologies, access to the most up-to-date industry studies and employment projections will be critical. more >>

Innovative Practices & Partnerships

The job creation potential of the green economy has led to some unique job training and economic development partnerships and collaborations. more >>

Professional Development Resources

This section includes promising facilitated learning opportunities, including “train the trainer” programs, standing conferences, and informal learning opportunities situated in practice for faculty and staff seeking to further their knowledge of industry trends and requirements. more >>

Policy & Funding Sources

Included you will find links and descriptions of agencies and organizations that typically fund sustainability and green job training initiatives as well as those that provide important information on national legislation and policies relevant to the clean energy sector. CHECK BACK AS MORE ARE ADDED. This section also highlights resources that provide guidance on how to supply input into program and grant design for certain agency solicitations. more >>

Skill sets, Competencies & Career Pathways

This section includes lists and assessments of skill sets and competencies tied to the green economy – across the broad industry as well as within specific sectors. It also includes some critical resources that colleges can use to align programs and facilitate student transitions. Included are green energy competency models and newly-developed career pathways that allow movement across educational and training programs. more >>

Sector: Topic:

Featured Resources

 Adapted from the website, "Living Room Conversations," in which participants discuss prevalent themes regarding global resilience, "Campus and Course Conversations" goes a step further to call participants to action. These activities can be used by faculty as course assignments and by staff as campus or community activities. They will increase skills for civil discourse, reducing political polarization and stalemate, while increasing the use of energy efficiency and renewable energies via a civic engagement opportunity. This resource provides support for people to merge ideas and engage in actions geared toward creating a safe operating space for humanity on Earth, regardless of race, religion or political beliefs.
Climate Explorer is a wonderful tool with which to explore the potential impacts of climate change on local or world-wide ecosystems, and would be useful as visuals in a lecture or for the creation of assignments or extra-curricular projects. It is a research platform offering interactive graphs and maps for comparing historic and current weather patterns and identifying climate shifts. The graphs and maps provided can be over-laid with rainfall and temperature information; plus, different themes are available for study, such as: "Climate Stressors" and "People and Assets Impacted." Maps can also be utilized to focus on very specific regions or topics, for example: coastal flood risks and ecosystem vulnerability. For long-term climate analysis information, be sure to check out "Climate at a Glance," found at: https://toolkit.climate.gov/tool/climate-glance
 This report shows how the US can reduce greenhouse gases by 80% by 2050.
Published by the USGBC Center for Green Schools, this plan represents the perspectives of the leading minds and the strongest champions of Education for Sustainability, together with one voice committing to a series of actions that will ensure that by 2040, every student graduating from a U.S. K-12 school will be equipped to shape a more sustainable future. AACC SEED Center Director Todd Cohen is a contributing author.
Fishbanks is a multiplayer web-based simulation in which participants play the role of fishers and seek to maximize their net worth as they compete against other players and deal with variations in fish stocks and their catch. Policy options available to instructors include auctions of new boats, permits, and quotas. This simulation provides the opportunity for students to learn about the challenges of managing resources sustainably in a common pool resource setting, with realistic resource dynamics.
A report by the Sustainable Endowments Institute shows strong growth of green revolving funds (GRFs) within the higher education sector. The 2012 report shows that 36 new GRFs have been created since 2010 with a median reported return on investment of 28 percent. Since 2010, GRFs have been launched in 31 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces. (October 2012)
Autonomy and Innovation, by higher education and workforce development expert Tom Hilliard, describes Michigan’s participation in Achieving the Dream, detailing how college-level reform initiatives highlight the need and build momentum for collective, state-level action to foster collaboration, spread innovation, and make effective use of student outcome data. (November 2012)
Local watershed organizations, municipal leaders, and others are invited to sign up for these free, on-line webcast training sessions. These webcasts on can be used in the creation of curricula and archives are available in multiple categories.
The U.S. Partnership for Education for Sustainable Development has developed a rich set of resources, including sites with downloadable learning activities, a beginner’s toolkit for sustainability, standards for K-12, and more.
Climate Communities is a national coalition of cities and counties that is educating federal policymakers about the essential role of local governments in developing new approaches to create livable communities, reduce energy use and curb greenhouse gas emissions. Climate Communities is working with local governments to ensure that federal policies provide strong incentives and resources for local clean energy and sustainability actions. These are potential partners for community based learning and innovative partnership.
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More Resources

An in-depth guide to careers and degree programs in the "green" sector. This resource begins with a comprehensive look at green industries and then dives into specific professional and educational options in fields such as sustainability, renewable energy, green construction, recycling and more. Key elements of the guide include: “Trends Fueling Green Careers,” “Where Green Jobs Grow”, "green" degree paths, internships by field, and “green” scholarship opportunities.
When developing curriculum on global climate, download this free PDF to investigate the possible effects of abrupt climate changes and impacts. Developed by the Committee on Understanding and Monitoring Abrupt Climate Change and Its Impacts, the Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate, the Division on Earth and Life Studies, and the National Research Council, this resource takes a look at our current knowledge of potential abrupt changes in the climate, assesses what risks are posed by such change, and recommends possible mitigation techniques before severe repercussions set in.
 This resource analyzes how specific American racial and ethnic groups understand and respond to climate change differently from each other and from the national averages. The report focuses on three groups: African-American, Asian-American, and Hispanic/Latino Americans. It discusses collected data, analysis, and makes suggestions on how to best refine teaching strategies for and better engagement with these key American groups for a better cross-cultural understanding of climate change. The report highlights are also discussed in a webinar found at: http://vimeo.com/100257952
This reports addresses ocean acidification by providing evidence of, considering the current and future impacts of, and by presenting challenges to be addressed and overcome. By breaking down complex scientific information, this resource is clear and understandable to anyone interested in the subject and will make a valuable classroom resource in the development of curricular materials or for assigned reading.
The Open Society Fellowship was founded in 2008 to support individuals pursuing innovative and unconventional approaches to fundamental open society challenges. The fellowship funds work that will enrich public understanding of those challenges and stimulate far-reaching and probing conversations within the Open Society Foundations and in the world. Become a fellow today!
 Adapted from the website, "Living Room Conversations," in which participants discuss prevalent themes regarding global resilience, "Campus and Course Conversations" goes a step further to call participants to action. These activities can be used by faculty as course assignments and by staff as campus or community activities. They will increase skills for civil discourse, reducing political polarization and stalemate, while increasing the use of energy efficiency and renewable energies via a civic engagement opportunity. This resource provides support for people to merge ideas and engage in actions geared toward creating a safe operating space for humanity on Earth, regardless of race, religion or political beliefs.
 The Carbon Tool was created to bring sustainability into community decision-making and design by allowing users to measure their performance in land management, energy, water, waste removal, transportation, and building materials. It is a progressive spreadsheet-based assessment that, where utilized, can contribute to a significant reduction of a neighborhood or institution's carbon footprint.
Use this resource when developing curriculum materials on climate preparedness and community resilience. It contains updated climate action news, a webinar series, various climate-related resources, and a section on local (New England's) resilience preparation for climate change.
 This interactive resource provides instructors and students with intelligence on what cities around the world are doing to become more resilient to growing physical, social, and economic stresses in today's world. It breaks the issue into three elements and addresses each individually: Shocks and Stressors, Qualities of Resilient Systems, and the City Resilience Framework.
Provides a guide for educators built off the original climate and energy literacy frameworks. Educators can find summaries of each principle, possible challenges when teaching the principle, suggested pedagogic approaches for each grade level for grades 6-16, and relevant teaching materials from the CLEAN reviewed collection. Look for connections to the Next Generation Science Standards coming soon!
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This resource made possible with the generous support from the Kresge Foundation