An article published on the federal agency’s website features UCF’s Energy Specialist program and a unique partnership between UCF and Orange County’s Central Florida Energy Efficiency Alliance (CFEEA).

During 12 weeks of training, students enrolled in UCF’s Energy Specialist program learn to use Energy Star software that benchmarks and tracks energy and water usage in buildings. Using the software is how an organization gets a building “Energy Star certified.”

“The training beefs up students’ resumes and provides hands-on experience in energy management, which makes them more marketable to future employers in industries that provide ‘green’ jobs,” said David Norvell, director of UCF’s Sustainability and Energy Management department.

Twenty-five UCF students have been trained and are using their newly acquired skills to help facility managers on campus and throughout Central Florida reduce energy and water consumption in buildings.

Orange County’s CFEEA calls for participating businesses and organizations to pledge that they will reduce their buildings’ energy and water consumption by 30 percent. However, in some cases, participating organizations may not have the time or money to train someone to use the Energy Star software.

That’s where CFEEA’s partnership with UCF comes in. Students who are trained in using the Energy Star software can assist with benchmarking and tracking energy and water usage.

“This is a winning partnership for UCF and Orange County, which ultimately benefits Central Florida’s environment,” Norvell said.

Students interested in Energy Star software training can send an e-mail to UCF’s Sustainability and Energy Management Department at [email protected]

UCF’s Energy Specialist program and CFEEA are funded by a grant from the federal government.