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IPAA/Energy Workforce Education Center Offers Exploring Energy Program

Virtual Energy Education Program

The IPAA/Energy Workforce Education Center (IEWEC), a partnership between the Energy Workforce & Technology Council and the Independent Petroleum Association of America, launched its latest nationwide initiative to help teachers: the Virtual Exploring Energy Program.

Started in January 2021, the program has already served 4,000 students representing 30 school districts across the country, including the following states and territories: Alaska, California, Georgia, Guam, Kentucky, Louisiana, Ohio, Oklahoma, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

The program provides educators with resources to lead students in learning about energy industry topics, career options, and development of soft skills necessary to succeed in the energy industry. The Virtual Exploring Energy Program offers a video library that covers areas including STEM, energy production, technology, leadership skills and industry animated tours. For the coming school year, the IEWC is adding renewable energy content to provide easily accessible information about all forms of energy in one place.

“We’re proud to support educators and students through this important program. Teachers are incorporating these resources into the curriculum throughout the coming school year to prepare the energy workforce of the future.”

Molly Determan, COO, Energy Workforce & Technology Council

IEWEC offers high school teachers the option to virtually welcome and industry professional to the classroom. Teachers can pick the date, time and topic, and the IEWC will handle scheduling an appropriate expert to work with students.

The IEWEC offers two components to help high school juniors and seniors build their networks and add to their resumes. The first is the Energy/STEM Certificate Program, which asks students to watch 20 videos from the Virtual Exploring Energy Program video repository and then write a brief essay or record a one-minute video discussing what they learned. This certificate can be used on college applications and resumes.

The IEWEC also offers the Emerging Leaders in Energy Program. Initiated in 2012, this program has grown to more than 1,600 young professionals around the country. Members of this program receive regular updates about the energy industry and connect with professionals already in the industry through IPAA. The program is designed to help students build a foundation for a successful career in energy.

These free programs are made possible through the generous sponsorship of leading energy companies and organizations, including: ConocoPhillips, Marathon Oil, American Association of Professional Landmen, American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, Apache Corporation, eog resources, Texas Oil & Gas Association, Kinder Morgan, Nabors, National Ocean Industries Association, Women’s Global Leadership Conference in Energy, Gulf Energy, Core Laboratories, Houston Geological Society, Lowry Rhoads Associates, Oceaneering, and Society of Petroleum Engineers.

In its nearly two decades of operation, the IEWEC has reached more than 17,000 students nationally. Its programs have 41% female participation, and two-thirds of students are economically disadvantaged. The program has encouraged first-generation college enrollment with more than $1 million in college scholarships and 750 industry student externships with 36 participating companies.

For more information, please contact Council COO Molly Determan.


Kevin Broom, Director Communications and Research, writes about the Council’s sector-specific best practices and leadership. Click here to subscribe to the Council’s newsletter, which highlights industry practices, workforce development, Council activities and more.
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