This past school year, freshmen at nine state technical high schools took their first step in the Green STEP program, an Energize Connecticut collaborative.

Students in the construction career cluster (carpentry, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, masonry) completed three milestones intended to introduce them to the world of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and sustainability.

GreenSTEPWorkforce development and education programs staff from Eversource and United Illuminating visited each school and introduced the concept of sustainability, reminding the students ‘enough for all, forever.’

The construction career students then took a field trip to the new Energize Connecticut Center in North Haven where the eesmarts staff took them on an interactive tour and engaged in two separate hands-on lessons.

Back at their schools, students conducted an energy investigation around their classrooms – measuring and recording the amount of energy the electronic devices and lighting used, and brainstorming how to reduce energy consumption.

As sophomores, students will build upon past lessons with three new milestones including developing a program for the Connecticut Science & Engineering Fair that addresses future sustainability, and taking a tour of a completed CT Zero Energy Challenge home.

The program will also be introduced to construction career freshman from all 18 Connecticut technical high schools.

Ultimately by the time they graduate, students will be ready to take the final step into the job market with sustainable building credentials in hand, immediately filling the green building industry’s growing workforce needs.