Another Great Class of MassCEC Clean Energy Industry Summer Interns

It’s no secret that outstanding talent from leading colleges and universities is a key advantage for Massachusetts.  Access to talent is one of the main reasons that the Bay State is home to so many clean energy companies.  For proof of that advantage, one need only review results from the 2016 Clean Energy Industry Summer Internship Program from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC).

Since its launch in 2011 through the end of fiscal year 2015, the program (which also includes fall and spring interns) has paid out over $5 million to support 1,805 interns at 317 different companies, making it by far the largest - and best - paid internship program in the nation focused exclusively on launching careers in the clean energy industry.  As a testament to the quality of the interns selected, at least 247 of those interns received full or part-time jobs at their host companies as a direct result of their internship.

This summer, MassCEC has added to its outstanding results by providing over $1,200,000 in wage reimbursements to support 263 paid interns at 145 different clean energy companies and organizations, including two who worked right here at NECEC and Cleantech Open Northeast. 

The 263 interns selected by employers were drawn from a competitive applicant pool of well over 1,000 eligible graduate, undergraduate and associate degree students.  As always, clean energy employers throughout the state noted that MassCEC’s well-organized – and sortable – online applicant pool is itself a competitive advantage for the state’s clean energy industry.

We took some time to review the stats about this year’s summer intern class and drew out these nuggets of interest below.

Which clean energy companies hosted summer interns this year?

Find a full list of all 145 summer intern hosts here.  

Which students are employers hiring this summer?

Over half of this year’s summer interns came from just seven universities, with the University of Massachusetts at Amherst the number one source of selected interns, by a wide margin. 

UMass Amherst - 41

Northeastern University - 20

Worcester Polytechnic Institute - 17

Boston University - 16

Tufts University - 16

Massachusetts Institute of Technology - 14

UMass Lowell - 11

Among the state’s community colleges, the leaders were Greenfield (7) and Bunker Hill (4).

So, what are employers looking for? If the summer internship selections are a key to that question, the answer is clear: engineers, business professionals, and scientists. Take a look at the five leading major fields of study for the 2016 summer interns:

Engineering - 90

Business (includes economics) - 53

Other/Unspecified - 38

Natural/Environmental Science - 28

Computer Science - 15

Among the 90 engineers, those with a mechanical engineering specialty led the pack.

Mechanical - 34

Electrical - 14

Chemical - 12

Civil- 11

Computer - 6

Energy - 6

All other - 7

Clean energy companies selected undergraduates (174), graduate students (68) and associate degree candidates (20) as finalists for their paid internships.  The host employers showed an interest in both interns who were graduating this year, and those who would be returning to school in the fall, as seen below.

Class of 2016 - 80

Class of 2017 - 90

Class of 2018 - 50

Class of 2019 - 20

Want to learn more?

Whether you’re an employer, teacher, student or career services professional, you can get all the information you need about the MassCEC internship program, and the state’s many clean energy education and training programs at www.cleanenergyeducation.org, a joint program of MassCEC and NECEC.

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Kevin Doyle

Kevin is Principal of Green Economy and Co-Chair of the Clean Energy Council's Workforce Development Group.