Xcel Conservation Improvement Plan Scholarship Grant

Xcel Conservation Improvement Plan Scholarship Grant

The Xcel Energy Foundation awarded a $45,000 Conservation Improvement Plan (CIP) Scholarship Grant to the Minneapolis College Foundation to fund scholarships for students enrolled in the College’s Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR) Program starting in Fiscal Year 2024. 

“Xcel Energy established the CIP Scholarship to help it create a diverse workforce of people who are passionate about careers in energy efficiency,” said Beverly Wadsworth, executive director of the Minneapolis College Foundation. “The scholarships create access for students who may otherwise not have an opportunity to train or earn a degree.”

“The HVACR program at Minneapolis College prepares students with a combination of skilled instructors, a strong advisory committee and by having students train on a wide variety of HVACR equipment,” said John Singel, HVACR faculty. “The team works hard to ensure the instructors, coursework and shop remain current to match the challenges the students will see in the field including energy efficiency solutions.”

“Xcel Energy has been a proud supporter of Minneapolis College for years, and we’re excited to deepen our relationship as these scholarships will increase access to higher education, retention, and graduation for low-income students,” said Sam Holsen, manager, Social Investments at Xcel Energy. “I am proud of Xcel Energy’s commitment to help students be successful in pursuit of their career goals, while also developing strong workforce pathways.”

The scholarship funds from the Xcel Energy Foundation are available to be matched by the State of Minnesota Workforce Development Grants, together totaling $5,000 in award dollars annually. Students who are interested in this and all other scholarships can apply on the Minneapolis College Scholarships webpage

“This partnership allows Minneapolis College and Xcel Energy to work together to solve shared energy efficiency goals,” said Wadsworth, who offered scholarships promote student retention and engagement. 

The HVACR industry is about learning skills students will use throughout their lifetime.  It is an industry that welcomes all people from young students right out of high school to people looking to retrain or shift careers.  The industry offers a wide variety of employment options including residential, commercial, and refrigeration systems.  Students can also pursue specialty careers in computer cooling, boilers, or chiller applications.  HVACR is a stable field. Every building requires some type of temperature control along with a variety of specialized applications.  

“Xcel Energy was the first major U.S. power provider to announce a vision for delivering 100% carbon-free electricity to customers by 2050,” said Holsen, who shared that Xcel Energy serves 3.8 million electricity and 2.1 million natural gas customers. “Since then, the company has expanded that commitment to other areas where we can lower carbon, including natural gas use in buildings and transportation.” 

Minneapolis College’s HVACR program is prepared to meet the needs of the students by offering three awards: Generalist Certificate, Diploma and an Associate of Applied Science.  These options allow the students to find their skill level and fulfill their training needs for the path they choose in a fast-growing and stable industry.     

Xcel Energy (NASDAQ:XEL) provides the energy that powers millions of homes and businesses across eight Western and Midwestern states. Headquartered in Minneapolis, the company is an industry leader in responsibly reducing carbon emissions and producing and delivering clean energy solutions from a variety of renewable sources at competitive prices. For more information, visit xcelenergy.com or follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

The Xcel Energy Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) organization that awards charitable grants and sponsors the volunteer programs of Xcel Energy and its subsidiaries. The majority of Xcel Energy Foundation funding comes from Xcel Energy shareholder dollars. For more information, visit the Xcel Energy Focus Area Grants webpage

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