Duke Energy Invests Over $3.6 Million to Build Diverse Workforce of the Future

Aug 20, 2019 1:55 PM ET
Summary: 
  • 54 organizations across six states to receive grants supporting innovative workforce education and training programs
  • Initiatives include efforts to grow pipeline of women, veteran and minority engineers
Press Release

CHARLOTTE, N.C., August 20, 2019 /3BL Media/ – Duke Energy announced today it is awarding over $3.6 million in grants to support 54 innovative workforce development programs across the communities served by the company.

“Our goal is to build a diverse workforce equipped to help the energy industry transform the grid and innovate to meet customers’ needs,” said Cari Boyce, president of the Duke Energy Foundation. “The energy sector generates an abundance of well-paid, dynamic jobs, and we want to ensure nontraditional students have access to these opportunities.”

The 2019 Powerful Communities grants, from the Duke Energy Foundation with support from Piedmont Natural Gas, aim to bolster programs serving under-represented, low-income or diverse audiences, including women and minorities.

“Duke Energy Foundation’s investment in our HOME program allows us to continue the College’s tradition of exposing a distinctive cohort of incoming engineering and computer science freshmen to tailored educational and professional development,” said Dr. Robin N. Coger, dean of the College of Engineering at North Carolina A&T State University. “On behalf of the students, faculty and staff of the College of Engineering, I thank the Duke Energy Foundation for their support.”

“The University of Central Florida’s College of Engineering and Computer Science, among the largest colleges of its kind in the nation, is known for its diverse student body and excellence in producing engineers who are fully-prepared for the energy industry and beyond,” said Michael Georgiopoulos, dean. “The innovative, industry-relevant opportunities that we provide our students integrate technical skills with project management and soft skills and are made possible through generous support from the Duke Energy Foundation, which benefits more than 200 students annually.” UCF’s peer and industry mentoring programs for women have helped increase graduation rates of female engineering and computer science students by approximately 40 percent.

The grants are part of Duke Energy’s Powerful Communities philanthropic program, which awards strategic charitable grants to nonprofit organizations working to build powerful communities by bolstering education, developing the future workforce of the energy sector and conserving and protecting our environment.

In 2018, Duke Energy Foundation invested more than $31 million to support communities throughout Duke Energy's seven-state service area.

A complete list of the 54 grant recipients and summaries by state can be found here:

  • Florida – $715,000 to support 18 projects
  • Indiana – More than $100,000 to support six projects

Duke Energy Foundation
The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to meet the needs of communities where Duke Energy customers live and work. The Foundation contributes more than $30 million annually in charitable gifts and is funded by Duke Energy shareholder dollars. More information about the Foundation and its Powerful Communities program can be found at duke-energy.com/foundation.

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, and 3,000 megawatts through its nonregulated Duke Energy Renewables unit.

Duke Energy is transforming its customers’ experience, modernizing the energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure unit’s regulated utilities serve approximately 7.7 million retail electric customers in six states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. The Gas Utilities and Infrastructure unit distributes natural gas to more than 1.6 million customers in five states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The Duke Energy Renewables unit operates wind and solar generation facilities across the U.S., as well as energy storage and microgrid projects.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2019 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list, and Forbes’ 2019 “America’s Best Employers” list. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on TwitterLinkedInInstagram and Facebook.

Contact 
Candice Knezevic
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