The Future of Solar Energy in the Military: A Roundtable Discussion by Ecotech Institute

Oct 27, 2014

Public event highlights military ties to the solar industry, while honoring military veterans

Denver, Colo. — Oct. 27, 2014 — On Tuesday, November 11, Ecotech Institute, the first and only college in the U.S. solely focused on renewable energy and sustainability, will host a public networking event to discuss the solar industry's ties with the U.S. military. The event will also honor military veterans who have transitioned into a solar energy career.

This free and open event will begin at 10 a.m. and last until noon at Ecotech Institute's campus in Aurora, Colo., at 1400 S. Abilene Street, right off of I-225.

Attendees will gain a military perspective on topics ranging from energy security and training to solar energy importance and skill application. Military Times recently named Ecotech Institute one of the top 10 schools in the nation for hiring and training veterans.

According to "Veterans in Solar: Securing America's Energy Future," a report by Operation Free and The Solar Foundation, the United States military understands that limited energy options make the military vulnerable. As a result, the military is now using solar photovoltaic systems in combat zones. As of early last year, military bases had more than 130 megawatts of solar PV as part of a mandate to substitute 25 percent of total energy consumption with renewable power by 2025.

"Many people serving in the military are working with solar energy, and as they move into a civilian career, the skills they gained in the military often transition seamlessly into renewables," said Chris Gorrie, academic dean at Ecotech Institute. "This event will highlight the insights and perspectives of military veterans who have expertise with solar, while honoring all they have sacrificed for our country."

Tuesday, November 11

10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Ecotech Institute, 1400 S. Abilene Street, Aurora, CO 80012

10:00 a.m. — Gather and Networking
10:15 a.m. — Guest Speaker Mark Mahoney
10:35 a.m. — Speaker Roundtable:

Chris Gorrie – Ecotech President: Ecotech Institute's priority of training vets in solar energy and building a more secure future.

Steve Hogan – Aurora Mayor: A salute to the veterans in Aurora and why Aurora, a solar-friendly community, is pleased to call Ecotech Institute a local school.

Mark Mahoney – Director Regional Environmental and Energy Office, Western Division: A military leader who will discuss the priorities of energy security and training of veterans for renewable energy careers.

Speaker TBD – Solar Executive: The executive of a solar company that hires veterans will speak to the benefits of military experience.

John Bringenberg – Executive Director of Colorado's Solar Energy Industries Association (COSEIA): A COSEIA board vice presidents and Ecotech Institute instructor will discuss the importance of training in the pursuit of a solar career.

Award Presentation 

11:30 a.m. — Ecotech Institute Tours and Networking

Read about Ecotech Institute's Solar Energy Technology degree program.

For more information on Ecotech Institute, visit

About Ecotech Institute
Ecotech Institute is the first and only college entirely focused on preparing America's workforce for careers in renewable energy and sustainability and is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. Launched in April 2010 in Denver, Colorado, it offers eight highly practical renewable energy degree programs that provide graduates with skills valued by today's alternative renewable energy employers. Classes start once per quarter and applications are always accepted. Financial assistance is available to those who qualify. Ecotech Institute is a division of Education Corporation of America. For more information about Ecotech Institute, visit or call 877-326-5576.