Two Join Center through Catawba Energy Corps
03/29/11 by Juanita Teschner
Two individuals have joined the Center for the Environment as Catawba College Energy Corps fellows.
Craig Midgett, a University of North Carolina-Charlotte graduate with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering, and Michael Smith, a LEED-accredited professional with a bachelor’s degree in architecture from UNCC, are two of the first fellows the Center has placed through the Energy Corps program.
Midgett is working on the campus-wide Presidents’ Climate Commitment and research to ensure LEED certification for the sustainable building that houses the Center for the Environment. Smith is working primarily on the Center’s LEED certification. The U.S. Green Building Council established the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program. It is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings.
The Center received a $184,000 grant from the N.C. Energy Office to orchestrate the Catawba Energy Corps program, which facilitates the placement of as many as 17 students or recent graduates in on-the-job internships and fellowships. The individuals are to work with businesses and organizations in the energy sector that are in the forefront of the state’s transition toward sustainability.
The Center staff is helping to place interns and fellows with 12 partnering green energy-related business and organizations: Calor Energy Consulting in Charlotte, Argand Energy in Charlotte, Optima Engineering in Charlotte, Southern Energy Management in Morrisville, Sundance Power Systems in Weaverville, Beaver Brothers in Salisbury, Catawba College in Salisbury, gDwell, Inc., in Charlotte, O2Energies in Cornelius, Rowan-Cabarrus Community College in Salisbury, Centralina Council of Governments in Charlotte and Davidson County Community College in Mocksville.
The Center held a Job Fair in February on campus to facilitate interviews between the companies and prospective candidates. So far, five individuals have accepted positions through the program. The Center will orchestrate its first educational outing for fellows and interns in April. Participants will attend the Annual Energy Conference hosted by the State Energy Office in Raleigh.
The Center for the Environment at Catawba College was founded in 1996 to provide education and outreach centered on prevalent environmental challenges and to foster community-oriented sustainable solutions that can serve as a model for programs throughout the country.