Veterans Find Bright Futures in Solar Industry

Workers working on a solar panel
Written by
Hiring Our Heroes

Guest post by Solar Ready Vets Network

Solar energy is one of the fastest growing industries in the world. The American solar industry experienced over 40% growth despite the COVID-19 pandemic, and this trend is expected to continue through the next decade. 

Veterans and service members make outstanding candidates for a wide range of solar careers. Military representation in the solar workforce has risen almost 20% during the past five years, as solar employers in all 50 states recruit veteran talent. 

As you’re transitioning from military service to the civilian workforce, and ready to rise to your next challenge, there’s a powerful career waiting for you in solar. 

The Solar Ready Vets Network: Positive Connections for Powerful Careers 

On rooftops and in offices across the country, military service members and veterans power the solar industry every day. From project development and management, engineering, operations and logistics, business development, IT, communications, sales, construction and installation, and much more, the solar industry offers a tremendous wealth of opportunity — hardhats optional. 

The Solar Ready Vets Network connects military talent with energizing solar career pathways. Through several coordinated initiatives funded by the U.S. Department of Energy,  the Solar Ready Vets Network is expanding solar training, credentialing and employment opportunities for military talent at all levels of the workforce. Through this program, Hiring Our Heroes leads the Solar Ready Vets Fellowship to support smooth transitions from active duty to leadership roles in solar.

To stay current on resources, events and opportunities related to solar training and career pathways, join the Solar Ready Vets Network at

Matt Kavanagh is an U.S. Navy veteran.

From Service to Solar: A Veteran’s Success Story

Matt Kavanagh is a Senior Manager of North American Logistics at SunPower Corporation. His path demonstrates how military experience can pave the way to a rewarding solar career. 

Matt Kavanagh is a Senior Manager of North American Logistics at SunPower Corporation.
Matt Kavanagh

Matt served in the U.S. Navy for five years. With a degree in systems engineering, the energy industry seemed like a natural fit. He began his civilian career working with a power utility on grid reliability, but quickly set his sights on the burgeoning solar industry. Rapid market development offered Matt the potential for a dynamic career in solar where his technical and leadership skills would be in high demand. 

He earned a PV Installation Professional certification from the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Soon, he joined SunPower as a procurement manager. In this role, Matt had the opportunity to quickly assume greater leadership focused on logistics and sustainability. 

In this role, he hosted a Solar Ready Vets Fellow transitioning from the Marine Corps, and is actively engaged with the Solar Ready Vets efforts to streamline solar certification requirements to recognize relevant military experience. 

“I’m proud to be part of the Solar Ready Vets Network, and encourage service members embarking on a civilian career to consider lending their talents to the solar industry,” Matt said.

Solar careers are a great match for the skills and values that veterans offer the workforce, and the solar industry offers a tremendous range of opportunities to advance a brighter future. 

Interested in the Solar Ready Vets Fellowship? Apply now, and be sure to indicate your interest in the solar industry.

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