ACT Inc. and the Center for Energy Workforce Development (CEWD) announced a partnership designed to provide a common entry point for individuals interested in pursuing energy-industry careers. The National Career Readiness Certificate, powered by three of ACT’s WorkKeys assessments, is a key element at the foundation of a new skills certification system developed by CEWD to address the looming work force crisis in energy occupations, including electric, natural gas and nuclear energy.

A 2009 CEWD survey predicted that, by 2015, nearly half of the engineers and skilled technicians in the industry will need to be replaced due to potential retirement or attrition. The CEWD skills certification system is designed to respond to that need by establishing a pathways model that provides a roadmap for entry into skilled energy-industry positions.

“It is imperative that we understand what it will take to get potential candidates properly trained and ready to move into entry-level positions as quickly as possible,” said Ann Randazzo, CEWD executive director. “ACT’s work force development solutions, including WorkKeys assessments and the National Career Readiness Certificate, as well as their international reputation as a data-driven assessment firm, makes them an ideal partner for CEWD as we begin the process of building tomorrow’s energy work force.”

CEWD recently announced receipt of a $1.37 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to prepare low-income adults, ages 16–26, in eight states for energy industry careers. ACT WorkKeys assessments and the National Career Readiness Certificate will be part of the basic training phase for CEWD’s “Get into Energy” Career Pathways program funded by this grant.

For more information, visit www.cewd.org.