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Upskill Prize for the Solar Manufacturing Workforce: Round 1

Open Date:

3/8/2024

Close Date:

5/21/2024

Eligible Recipients:

  • Educational Institutions
  • Local Governments
  • Native/Tribal Entities
  • Non-profits
  • Private Sector
  • State Governments

Program Purpose:

  • Education and Workforce Development
  • Energy Infrastructure

Reserved for Energy
Communities?

No

Upcoming Milestones:

Submission deadline for Round 1 is May 21, 2024 at 5 pm ET.

Bureau/Office:

Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO)

Funded by:

U.S. Department of Energy

Overview

DOE aims to support the growth of a reliable domestic photovoltaics (PV) supply chain, which will require scaling the solar workforce to meet new demand. The Upskill Prize encourages the expansion of the US solar manufacturing workforce by rewarding proposals that focus on high-quality employment prospects and skillsets that can be utilized for career growth. The Upskill Prize incentivizes partnerships between US manufacturers and training organizations, aiming to attract new workers to careers in solar manufacturing with job-ready training programs. Eligible manufacturers include those in polysilicon, ingot, wafer, cell, module, and module components like glass. Competing teams propose comprehensive workforce training plans that are composed of either or both:

  • New Worker Training: Develop and propose plans to train new workers with the skills they need to be successful in the solar manufacturing industry, particularly at new or expanding manufacturing facilities.
  • Incumbent Worker Training: Develop and propose plans to train incumbent workers with new skills needed to support the growth of solar manufacturing.

The prize also requires partnerships between U.S. manufacturers and training organizations, aiming to attract new individuals to careers in solar manufacturing with job-ready training programs. It offers flexibility in the types of training that can be provided, based on the needs of the manufacturer.

The Upskill Prize offers a total prize pool of $5 million in cash prizes. Winning teams receive up to $500,000 each for their submitted comprehensive workforce training plans.

Submissions will be accepted and awarded over multiple rounds on an anticipated 4 – 6-month rolling basis until the allocated funding is awarded. Key dates for the prize, including the open and close submission dates for each round, will be posted and updated regularly on the HeroX platform: https://www.herox.com/upskillprize.

Eligibility

Private entities, non-profits, non-federal government organizations, or academic institutions can compete for this prize. Teams competing in this prize must be led by either a US-based PV manufacturer or US-based training organization.

Related Resources

Additional information is available on the Resources page.

Funding Details

Funding Source:
Funding Type:
Direct Award
Total Amount Available:
$5,000,000
Limit per Applicant:
$500,000
Estimated Awards:

Applicant Guidance

Contact Information

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