Free certification training continues


August 14, 2012

The North American Wind Research and Training Center of Mesalands Community College will feature a one-semester occupational certificate in basic wind energy technology.

A total of 28 students have received the certificate from Mesalands, including Orlando Encinias of Albuquerque.

A May graduate, the 43-year-old Encinias oversees eight fulltime employees and 40 wind turbines as site supervisor at the High Lonesome Wind Farm in New Mexico.

"I will put it this way; I don't think I would have ever gotten this position if I didn't go to that school," Encinias said. "This program really helped me. Matter of fact, I'm looking to hire one of the guys that was in class with me. I don't know him personally; I was simply impressed with his troubleshooting abilities, knowledge, and his intensity."

Other program graduates have obtained jobs throughout New Mexico, Texas and in Oklahoma.

Students in the program gain real-world training experience on the college's on-campus 1.5 megawatt wind turbine, which is shut down frequently to give students hands-on training and troubleshooting experience.

Wind Center Director Jim Morgan said the course is free to qualified individuals, due to a wind energy grant.

Classes run Aug. 21 through Dec. 7. For information, call 461-4413, ext. 156, or visit


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