Workforce Development

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AAEF’s Workforce Development mission is to develop an equitable pipeline of clean economy career education and skill development:

For diverse students and adults to gain equitable, quality, family-sustaining jobs.

For employers to access a qualified workforce pool.

For public and private partners to streamline offerings and leverage funding together.

To reduce our collective impact on climate change and human health.

Sustainability and Advanced Energy Workforce

There is no established definition of green jobs, but is usually described as any emerging careers with environmental benefit, especially those for which employers currently must train their talent internally and do not have established educational pathways. This may include renewable energy, energy efficiency, utilities, transportation, sustainability/ESG, design and construction, land use, water, manufacturing, etc.

Advanced Energy jobs are growing twice as fast as the national average with almost half not requiring a college degree, but offering salaries above the national median.

Reference: “Job Opportunities in Advanced Energy” by Advanced Energy Economy and The Burning Glass Institute. October 2022.

In-Demand Industries

Renewable Energy



Green Building Specialists
ESG Managers
Carbon Analysts

Electric Vehicles


Energy Efficiency

Energy Engineers
HVAC and Controls

Our Programs


Registered apprenticeship is a proven, industry-driven career pathway where employers can develop and prepare their future workforce. AAEF is an Industry Intermediary as a Registered Apprenticeship Provider with the Department of Labor.

Industry Workforce Focalization

Advanced Energy is an emerging industry in Arkansas. Focus is needed to develop and coordinate a contiguous green jobs pipeline from career exposure to professional development. AAEF is proud to support the industry through these activities: 

  • Defining individual career progressions
  • Aligning nationally-recognized accreditations and licensures with career progressions
  • Aggregating local and national training resources
  • Surveying industry to define job and skills demand
  • Convening industry experts in advisory committees to address specific market concerns
  • Participating in national conversations to share what we’ve learned and ensure we are not re-inventing the wheel
  • Collaborating with local and national partners for grant and other funding sources

Career Exposure

The Advanced Energy and Sustainability Industry needs more exposure to help Arkansas’ talent understand the available, high-paying, and meangingful careers available. AAEF is excited to address this opportunity with the following actions:

  • Public Speaking
    • Availability of our staff to deliver inspiring and educational presentations to classes, organizations, employers, or at conferences and events
    • Development of a Speaker’s Bureau of relevant employers, experts, and stakeholders in this industry
  • Educator Support
    • Sharing access to curricula that provides general level of understanding about topics in advanced energy and sustainability
    • Development of a Tour Bureau to provide field-trip ideas that spark an interest in this industry
  •  Events
    • Participation by AAEF staff in career fairs and conferences
    • Development of a Green Jobs Festival
      • Provide hands-on experiences, conversations with workers in the field, and exciting presenters to provide the spark that ignites a career path in this industry.
  • Occupational Awareness Databases
    • Integration of Advanced Energy skills and careers into education and workforce system lists of occupational areas, career cards, etc.
  • Diversity and Equity
    • Focus on career awareness, reduction of industry barriers, and other support for diverse audiences to gain equitable access to our industry careers

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About Arkansas Advanced Energy Foundation

Arkansas Advanced Energy Foundation promotes greater public understanding of advanced energy in Arkansas through research, public education programs and economic and workforce development.