Academics

Solar Energy

 

 

About the Solar Energy Program

A Bright Future is Yours with a Career in Solar

The solar photovoltaic (PV) program at Santa Monica College is designed to provide you with the skills necessary to place and advance in the solar energy industry. In as little as 16 weeks, gain hands-on education and training in accelerated lab environments that help prepare you for work in this dynamic field. Pursue job roles like installer, crew leader, or PV designer. Alternative career tracks include solar sales and marketing, and even business ownership.

Over the course of the solar installation program, you will learn to appreciate and cultivate a holistic perspective on the complex role that solar power plays in our increasingly global economy and climate. You will examine the theoretical and technical dimensions of PV systems, including advanced principles of energy and electricity, heat transfer, light measurement, PV components and equipment, and sizing and design.

Solve installation and design challenges alongside your peers as you apply alternative energy solutions to real-world problems in compliance with energy codes and standards. Learn how to describe the environmental, economic, and social benefits of solar photovoltaic systems, and understand the nuances of the political and regulatory infrastructures affecting solar photovoltaic system installation.

Earn a Department Certificate or extend your coursework to earn a state-approved solar photovoltaic installation certificate with the qualifications required to take the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Photovoltaic Installer Entry Level Exam.

Degrees and Certificates

Associate in Science Degree - Solar Photovoltaic and Energy Efficiency

18 units + General Education Requirements

Certificate of Achievement - Solar Photovoltaic Installation

14 units

Department Certificate - Basic Solar Photovoltaic Installation

8 units

The Solar Photovoltaic Installation Certificate is designed to provide students the skills necessary to place and advance in the solar energy industry. It is also designed to provide students with a holistic perspective on the role of solar power in a changing global economy and climate.

View Requirements View Requirements View Requirements

SMC & Department Resources

Potential Career Options

Click on any job title to learn more.

Table Heading Table Heading Table Heading
Energy Auditors Bachelor Degree $70,007
Solar Energy Systems Engineers Bachelor Degree $100,713
Solar Sales Representatives and Assessors Bachelor Degree $77,459
Solar Energy Installation Managers Certificate $63,946
Solar Photovoltaic Installers High School Diploma or More $39,611
Solar Thermal Installers and Technicians High School Diploma or More $48,938