Dynamic Growth Follows NABCEP’s Leadership Role

Less than a year after certifying its 1,000th PV solar installer, NABCEP has accepted applications in record numbers for the 2010 Certified Installer Examination to be held on September 11, 2010. This year’s 598 applicants mark the second straight record-breaking year for the nation’s leading PV installer and trainer credentialing and certification organization.

“It is gratifying to see continued growth in applicants for our Certification Exam,” Don Warfield, chairperson of NABCEP (National Board of Certified Energy Practitioners) said. “It shows the value practitioners across the country place on achieving this career milestone.”

Administered in 21 locations in 18 states and Puerto Rico, the rigorous examination challenges a candidate’s knowledge of PV system design, installation, safety, project management, maintenance, troubleshooting, and more. NABCEP’s PV Installer Certification is the renewable energy industry’s only personnel credential accredited to ANSI/ISO 17024 standards, the highest degree of recognition that a personnel-credentialing program can achieve. NABCEP Certification exams are offered twice a year. The application deadline for the March 2011 exam is January 14, 2011.

“The market is voting with its feet,” said NABCEP executive director Ezra Auerbach, who believes the steady increase in applicants is due to the NABCEP Installer Certification’s growing status as “the most meaningful credential an installer can attain.”

NABCEP Certification also inspires confidence in solar consumers, Auerbach added. “There is no more comprehensive PV system knowledge assessment for customers to look to and trust,” Auerbach said. “Each person who earns a NABCEP Installer Certification has demonstrated the knowledge required to successfully assume the role of project leader for a residential or light commercial renewable energy system installation.”

Entry Level Program Also Growing

NABCEP also reported that their PV Entry Level Program has passed a milestone as well: More than 200 training organizations across the U.S. have registered with NABCEP as PV Entry Level Exam Providers, a 50% percent increase over last year.

Introduced in 2005, NABCEP’s PV Entry Level Program offers new solar market entrants a way to demonstrate that they have attained a basic knowledge of the fundamentals of PV systems. Students can take the Entry Level Test after completing an approved PV solar course with a NABCEP registered training organization. More than 7,000 students have passed NABCEP’s PV Entry Level Exam.

Chairperson Warfield said, “The steady growth in the number of PV Entry Level Exam Providers and students reflects the strong demand in the U.S. for renewable energy job training for people new to the industry.”