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ANSI and IREC to Pursue Joint Accreditation Program to Bolster Workforce Readiness for Clean Energy Economy

New York, NY, August 18, 2011: The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), coordinator of the U.S. voluntary standardization system, has announced a partnership with the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) designed to help bolster the American workforce for the growing number of clean energy jobs of the future.

Under a memorandum of understanding signed July 28, ANSI and IREC will pursue an independent, joint accreditation program for credit or non-credit energy efficiency and renewable (excluding hydro-power) energy-related certificate programs offered in formal educational institutions and other legal entities. The initiative is being undertaken with advisory support from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
The goal of the IREC’s ISPQ assessment program is to assess content, quality, and resources across a range of renewable energy, energy efficiency, and weatherization training programs. This process leads to defined workplace knowledge and skills, and ensures the legitimacy of what is being taught and by whom.

Launched in 2009, ANSI’s Certificate Accreditation Program (ANSI-CAP) accredits organizations that issue education and training certificates to the U.S. workforce. The program is the first of its kind to provide third-party accreditation for training and education programs against a nationally recognized standard for quality certificate programs. The ANSI Certificate Accreditation Program currently has eleven accredited organizations and nineteen preliminary applicants.

The joint ANSI-IREC accreditation services would assess whether a certificate program's curriculum, educational process, and management system meet industry expectations, resulting in the issuance of a market-valued certificate.

“This MoU is just the latest example of ANSI’s commitment to enhance the credentialing of personnel and fostering a more robust and qualified American workforce,” said Dr. Roy Swift, ANSI senior program director of personnel credentialing accreditation programs. “The Institute brings many years of experience and government recognition in assisting in the delivery of quality accreditation programs. We look forward to partnering with IREC to demonstrate value and assure competency for this important national priority.”

IREC's Executive Director Jane Weissman commented, "IREC's new standard will provide the framework for a specialty accreditation that will raise the bar for training the clean energy workforce. Our partnership with ANSI has been built on mutual respect and a common goal of quality assessment and training."



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