Schneider Electric has announced it is launching a comprehensive university relations program that aims to promote collaboration between academia, government, and the business community in providing needed energy management skills development at the university level.

“There is a sizable business opportunity in energy management today and the market will continue to grow,” said Jeff Drees, U.S. president, Schneider Electric. “We all need to get off the sideline and do our part to ensure there is a skilled workforce at many levels to sustain the demand for energy management solutions. Companies like ours that hold energy management expertise need to not only participate, but help lead this movement in conjunction with the public sector and academia.”

Schneider Electric’s university relations program will provide schools with initiatives ranging from executive-level sponsorship and participation in campus speaking opportunities, subject-matter access for energy management curriculum development and university research projects, strategic counsel on university sustainability plans, sponsorships of university competitions focused on green technology and energy management, and a commitment to provide global career opportunities to recent college graduates who are preparing for careers in green technology. Schneider Electric will also work with universities to create on-site learning labs that demonstrate future technologies, enhancing the education experience for students and faculty and providing opportunities to integrate energy management into the classroom in a hands-on way.

The university relations program is a natural extension of the company’s current university initiatives, as well as its ongoing sponsorship of the Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon competition. This sponsorship includes working with universities to design, build and operate their net-zero homes, and supplying the technologies and engineering services required to build the micro-grid solution. The micro- grid connected the solar homes to the Washington, D.C.-area utility, Pepco, allowing the village to feed excess solar energy back into the regional electric grid for the duration of the competition. Schneider Electric’s global sponsorship will continue at the 2012 Solar Decathlon in Madrid and the 2013 Decathlon in Beijing.

Training and Educating our Future and Current Workers

The launch of the university relations program also reinforces several other external programs Schneider Electric has announced to bring needed energy management training and education to the forefront for our future and current green workforce.

For electrical contractors, the company launched its EcoXpert training and certification program, designed to help electrical contractors grow their businesses and increase revenue by giving them certified training to meet growing customer needs for energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions. Seven certification paths will be offered, from electric vehicle charging to lighting control, energy monitoring, and renewable power generation systems.

For customers, partners and the general public, the company also recently announced that Energy University, its free, on-line, vendor-neutral education tool on energy management, has now attracted more than 50,000 users from over 100 countries. Since its launch in 2009, Energy University now offers over 55 courses in nine languages and is now partnering with 10 professional associations to provide continuing education credits. For more information on Energy University visit