Because we are the best org on campus!…obviously.
If you have even a vague interest in how clean technologies, you should come and learn more about them. These are not just hippy, pie-in-the-sky ideas (although there are some of those), these are real businesses being built on the idea that helping the environment and turning a profit are not values in conflict.
What do we do?
1. Speakers – Over the past year, not including the energy forum, the CleanTech Group has brought in a variety of speakers to discuss topics on different aspects of the CleanTech industry. Companies that have visited include SunPower, Waste Management, Exxon, Chevron, and Conoco Phillips. Speakers not only allow students to learn about these companies, but also give them a chance to speak with company representatives and make connections
2. CleanTech Treks – Last fall, 38 students from the CleanTech group took a “CleanTech Trek” to Houston where we visited Chevron, Connoco Phillips, Horizon Wind, Vestas, Clean Line Partners, en mass to learn more about what these companies are doing in the industry and show companies our level of interest in pursuing careers in this area. Additonally, we took 30 students (largly subsidized) to San Francisco to visit that clean technologies community. Participants in the CleanTech trek have secured internships and full-time positions at the companies visited. Moving forward, we are planning more CleanTech Treks to Houston and San Francisco next fall.
3. Community Outreach – The CleanTech group is active in participation with Austin professional organizations in the CleanTech Industry. Representatives regularly attend events organized by Solar Austin, Solar Energy Entrepreneurship Society, the Webber Group, Austin Technology Incubator, and CleanTX. All members are kept abreast of the different networking opportunities around Austin and national conferences where there are good opportunities to meet companies in the Cleantech industry.
4. “PLUS” Projects – The CleanTech Group has built relationships with major Cleantech companies and local start-ups to develop mini-consulting projects for students over the semester. This program allows students to gain real world experience in the industry and develop relationships with the companies they work with. The companies get the benefit of “free” consulting work and a chance to evaluate students for internships and full-time jobs. These “PLUS” projects often create future internship and full-time job opportunities. Example companies that participate include Heliovolt, Plasma Gasificaiton Corp, GreenOrder, Global Climate Strategies, and Horizon Wind, Vestas Wind, Venti Wind, Profound Group, and RRE Austin Solar.
5. UT Energy Forum –This is a massive event which allows for unprecedented networking with all kinds of individuals from the energy industry. Venture capitalists, company representatives, national laboratory directors, CEOs, and many other people all gathered for this event.
6. Field Trips! – To guide us on these trips we recruit senior leaders of the organizations that own the facilities. They are generally eager to get involved as this is a very low cost way of getting their name as a possible employer out to our community. ERCOT, LCRA, Austin Energy, Horizon Wind, and others are on this list of destinations.