About PowerPathway™

PG&E’s PowerPathway™ is an innovative program that is building a skilled workforce to deliver the high quality of service our customers expect. By partnering with educational and workforce investment systems, labor, and industry employers, we are cultivating and preparing individuals for high demand positions at PG&E and throughout the energy and utility industries.

Recognition

Recognized by the National Commission on Energy Policy as a best practice program, by Clean Edge Clean Tech Job Trends as an organization to watch, and through our new partnership with the White House and Skills for America's Future initiative, PG&E's PowerPathwayTM program is a distinguished leader in workforce development.
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Preparing for a New Energy Workforce

Utilities across the country are facing a critical shortage of skilled workers and trained professionals to meet the increasing demands placed on our nation’s aging workforce. The PowerPathway™ program was created in anticipation of a sharp rise in employee retirements throughout the energy and utility industries over the next decade.

Background

Several years ago, PG&E identified a gap between the company's workforce needs and the inconsistent availability of work-ready applicants. In response to this workforce trend, PG&E launched PowerPathway™—a collaboration with local community colleges, the public workforce development system and unions—to enlarge the talent pool of qualified candidates for entry-level skilled craft jobs, such as a utility worker or lineman. Since then, the PowerPathway™ model has expanded to include four-year universities in new geographic areas, new job classifications, and reaching out to military veterans who are transitioning into the energy sector. The PG&E PowerPathway™ Training Network is now cultivating career pathways in four areas: clean tech vehicles, energy efficiency and renewables, engineering and the smart grid, and skilled crafts.

An example of a training program from the PG&E PowerPathway™ Skilled Crafts Training Network includes:

  • Bridge to Pre-Apprentice/Utility Worker
    Short-term courses (8-12 weeks) at local community colleges designed to strengthen participants’ candidacy for employment and increase their knowledge of the energy and utility industries.

As new opportunities for enhancing our environment, improving the reliability and efficiency of our electric grid, and encouraging customers to save energy continue to emerge, both our prospective and current employees need the skills and expertise to either enter the field or advance their careers. Programs developed by PowerPathway™ and our training partners are helping both new and experienced workers remain competitive within today’s energy industries.

Our Approach

Driven by industry workforce need, each PowerPathway™ program is tailored to strengthen the capacity of each educational partner. Workforce Investment Board (WIB) partners screen, test, advise and support potential applicants. Education partners provide the training courses that prepare applicants to be work-ready and able to compete for jobs or advance their careers in the energy and utility industries.

PG&E's role varies from partner to partner and may include:


  • curriculum design
  • faculty “train-the-trainer” programs
  • technical assistance
  • co-delivery of classroom instruction
  • program management
  • student field visits
  • in-kind donations of equipment
  • program funding
  • employment and/or enlistment of additional employers to advise and hire

All of our partners share a high level of commitment to establishing career pathways, especially in underserved communities. In this way, PowerPathway™ strengthens one of PG&E's core values of diversity by ensuring a reliable pipeline of qualified candidates who reflect the communities we serve.

 

Vision

  • Delivering tomorrow's workforce today.

Mission

  • To create a qualified pipeline of candidates for PG&E and the industry through public-private collaboration.

In the News

  • Call Before You Dig
  • Federal government agencies incentives
  • California Solar Initiative
 
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