In addition to providing energy efficiency measures to Maryland residents, Civic Works also expands access to family-sustaining careers in the green construction sector through its workforce development program, the Center for Sustainable Careers (CSC). Through CSC, Civic Works supports residents facing systemic barriers in building the skills needed to secure quality employment, and employers around investing in their workers and advancing equity across their practices. Civic Works trains and places Maryland residents in mid-skill jobs across five different industries: energy efficiency, solar installation, utility infrastructure, brownfields remediation, and stormwater management.

CSC’s training programs have been recognized locally and nationally as a model for green-collar workforce development. The National Fund for Workforce Solutions published a report on driving systems change that repeatedly identifies CSC as a successful model in providing young adults with high-quality instruction, support services, and placement in family-sustaining careers. Throughout each of the trainings, participants gain industry-recognized certifications and essential skills that allow them to qualify for a variety of positions in the construction sector offering average starting wages of over $15 per hour. The combination of meaningful employment, a living wage, and marketable trade skills has proven powerfully successful. Since 2003, CSC has maintained an average job placement rate of 88%. As a sign of CSC’s successful curriculum and training, Civic Works received accreditation from the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) for its Energy Retrofit training track in 2018.CSC has also been recognized for its leadership around supporting employers to improve job quality and advance equity across their workplace practices.

Civic Works Energy Programs supports our workforce development initiative by ensuring that the participating contractors we work with hire local residents from historically marginalized communities. These contractors sign a Community Workforce Agreement committing to hire installers trained by CSC, uphold equitable hiring standards, and provide family-sustaining wages of at least $15.00 per hour. Over the past few years, Energy Programs’ contractors have hired over 50 local residents from historically marginalized communities into full-time family-sustaining positions.

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