Granite Services International Inc., an affiliate of General Electric (GE), recently held its seventh new-hire training at the North American Wind Research and Training Center (NAWRTC) at Mesalands Community College in Tucumcari, N.M.
The focal point of Granite's one-week training is the use of the college's 1.5 MW GE wind turbine, adjacent to the wind center.
For the past three years, Granite has held its new-intern training at the center, where classes, averaging nine students, include focuses on CPR/first aid certification, tower rescue training, self-rescue training, occupational safety and health administration training certification, and a climb test.
"We regularly stop our wind turbine to allow our students to gain hands-on experience and become well-qualified wind technicians," explains Jim Morgan, director of the North American Wind Research and Training Center. "We are also always willing to partner with other companies that share that same goal."
"When you're training on an operational site, they're usually reluctant to shut the wind turbine down because it's generating revenue," according to Kenneth Brennan, resource manager at Granite International. "We are already working with Mesalands Community College as one of our five partner schools in the Granite Services International Wind Technician Internship Program."
Granite will have another new-hire training in either November or December and is expecting 12 to 15 students in the class.