The primary objectives of GridEd and its GREAT with Data initiative are to:
- Identify and incorporate high-level digital power systems/smart grid related research already being performed within the partnering institutions into educational products with regional engagement.
- Develop credentials and standards for key roles, set in consultation with priorities identified by technical and human resource utility advisors for the benefit and development of all aspects of their diverse workforce.
- Identify effective delivery and engagement methods for professional training courses at the intersection of power systems and digital systems through an evaluation pilot.
- Create a variety of custom tailored professional short courses, tutorials, workshops, and other methods of instructional and experiential delivery while providing new and revised courses in regular university programs.
- Grow a robust training program to increase awareness of data uses, communication protocols, cyber security, analytic techniques, and related job opportunities in the electric power industry while building strong regional bonds among stakeholders.
- Expand the number of universities, students, and professionals who engage in education and training at the intersection of power systems and digital systems.
- Sustain a workforce development program that assures the design and operation of the future grid will embrace solar PV and other distributed energy resources (DER) technologies through a well-developed workforce
GridEd will define and develop educational offerings for all levels, including:
- K thru 12 students.
- Undergraduate and graduate students.
- Practicing engineers pursuing professional development opportunities.
- Mature and experienced engineers seeking to understand and develop skills to address the evolving energy systems.
Training future, new, and existing professional engineers and data scientists will poise the industry for success. The robust GridEd training program includes two main channels of expert knowledge. First, the results of decades of research on integrating distributed energy resources into the grid will inform the GridEd courses. Second, the expert knowledge that would normally be lost by attrition (such as through retirement) will be captured by an aggressive effort to monitor the state of employees and interview them before their expertise is lost. The result will be training material in many forms suited to specifically educate college and university students—the next generation of electric industry employees—as well as existing employees.