Wind Energy Jobs and How To Get Them
Wind energy is one of the fastest growing job opportunities today. The wind industry in the United States has been expanding at a rate of 35-40% per year for the last few years and is expected to continue to expand rapidly under the alternative energy-friendly leadership of President Obama.
According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), the wind industry already employs 50,000 people in the United States, and this figure is expected to increase at least tenfold, to 500,000, by 2030.
Wind energy careers will be available in numerous fields to those with the interest and educational background to claim them.
Job Opportunities in Wind Energy
The main areas of job growth in the wind industry are expected to include resource analysis, manufacturing, installation, and management, as well as research. A smaller number of jobs are expected to be created in areas such as public relations, human resources, and other support business personnel for wind energy companies.
Job Title Sampling
A sampling of wind energy job titles:
- Wind resource analyist
- Environmental impact analyist
- Turbine R&D scientist
- Crane operator
- Large load tranportation specialist
- Wind turbine technician
- Construction manager
- Proposal writer
- Offshore developer
The wind industry will employ people with backgrounds in fields such as:
- electrical engineering
- computer science
In many cases, a general degree in one of the above (or related) fields might be enough to get a good-paying job in the wind industry. However, a growing number of universities and technical schools in the United States are offering specific degree programs or certification relating to wind energy. The US Department of Energy website Wind Powering America offers a list of wind energy degree programs and other educational opportunities.
Wind industry sources also recommend that students interested in the industry seek out a wind energy internship before graduation. Internships offer valuable real world experience, as well as an opportunity to network and make connections within the industry.
Is Wind Energy Technician the career for you?
- KidWind | Wind Energy Careers
This page will provide you with some resources to learn about the jobs available in the wind industry and how to prepare yourself to get these jobs.
- Careers in Wind Energy - Science Careers
Wind energy is one of the fastest growing sources of electricity in the United States, and it has produced a number of career opportunities.
- Career Currents (PDF)
Exploring today's energy careers: wind energy
- Careers in Wind
A website maintained by the AWEA for wind energy job seekers and employers
Other Opportunities in Wind Energy
Wind energy also offers opportunities for landowners with good wind resources. Through net metering programs, landowners who wish to install a small wind project on their property can earn extra income by selling unused power generated on their property to local energy companies.
A growing number of farmers, ranchers, and other large-scale landowners are also leasing land to wind energy corporations to develop wind farms on their property. Wind farms can be combined with many field crops for extra income, and combine especially well with livestock grazing operations. For more information, visit Wind Energy Basics for Farmers.
Support Wind Energy
- Apollo Alliance
The Apollo Alliance is a coalition of labor, business, environmental, and community leaders working to catalyze a clean energy revolution that will put millions of Americans to work in a new generation of high-quality, green-collar jobs.
America is blessed with the world's greatest wind power corridor. The Pickens Plan will utilize these tremendous resources to build a bridge to the future — a blueprint to reduce foreign oil dependence by hanessing domestic energy alternatives.
- Build Baby Build
Build Baby Build is more than just a blog about renewable energy. It includes your toolbox to organizing support for community-based, distributed generation projects.