The Duke Energy Foundation will provide $350,000 to support 11 community college programs across the state working to create a pipeline of skilled lineworkers that will help meet the energy industry's future workforce needs.
With this additional funding, the Foundation has awarded more than $6.7 million over the past five years in support of workforce development programs with a focus on the energy sector.
Grantees will primarily use the lineworker training program funds for diversity recruitment, instructor stipends, equipment, materials and program marketing. One of the community college grantees, Forsyth Technical Community College Foundation received $35,000 in funds.
"We are profoundly grateful to Duke Energy for their continued and generous support of our Electrical Lineworker Program. As we approach the graduation of our 62nd class of lineworkers, this support is not just a contribution, it's a commitment to the future of our students and the energy sector," said Dr. Janet N. Spriggs, President, Forsyth Tech.
Duke Energy's Investment in Lineworker Diversity and Excellence
As Duke Energy progresses through its shift towards clean energy, the demand for a proficient workforce is steadily increasing.
Lineworkers assume a crucial role in enhancing the efficiency and reliability of the digital grid. Duke Energy's commitment to investing in lineworker training programs and collaborating with community colleges aims to cultivate a more diverse talent pool for the utility industry.
"Given North Carolina's tremendous growth, lineworkers are essential to strengthening our infrastructure and allowing our communities to thrive," said Kendal Bowman, Duke Energy's North Carolina president. "These grants are one way we can create access to workforce development opportunities across the state, helping ensure our workforce diversity reflects the communities we serve, live and work in."