College of Engineering awarded $2.5 million to develop clean energy program

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Anthony Kuh, (808) 956-7527
Professor, Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering
Eric R. Matsunaga, (808) 956-7584
Director, Marketing & Public Affairs, College of Engineering
Posted: Apr 16, 2010

UH Mānoa's College of Engineering, with the support of Hawaiian Electric Company, has been awarded a $2.5-million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act stimulus grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to train students and current workers for emerging jobs in clean and renewable energy technologies in the electric power industry. 
Officially titled, “Integrated Education and Research in Clean Energy and Island Sustainability,” the project is a major component of UH Mānoa’s Renewable Energy and Island Sustainability (REIS) program. Led by Electrical Engineering Professor Anthony Kuh, REIS seeks to establish a prominent national and international program in renewable energy at the university. UH Mānoa will use these funds to create a multi-disciplinary program of formal courses and hands-on research experience in clean energy technologies, renewable energy production, energy storage, integration and smart grid technologies. 
“This funding from the U.S. Department of Energy will enable UH Mānoa to play a key role in the education and research in developing clean energy technologies in Hawaiʻi and the United States,” said professor Kuh. “We are delighted to have a proactive partner like Hawaiian Electric to help us develop this ambitious program.”
Utility companies like Hawaiian Electric will benefit from better informed consumers, educators and a future workforce trained in renewable energies. In addition to creating a pipeline to support the integration of new wind, solar, wave and smart grid technologies, the project aims to enhance the training of the existing workforce in these areas. 
“This is a natural alliance because UH Mānoa has always been the leading source of our engineers and other team members,” said Dick Rosenblum, president and CEO of Hawaiian Electric Company. “With today’s intense transformation of the utility industry to renewable energy and energy efficiency, this effort is very timely.”
The $2.5 million federal contribution will be matched by nearly $280,000 in funding and support by UH Mānoa. Final details of the project will be discussed in the near future.
“I would like to congratulate Professor Kuh, his team and Hawaiian Electric on a job well done,” said Peter E. Crouch, dean of the College of Engineering. “With this initiative, we are poised to begin education and training programs for a new generation of engineers focused on a broad range of clean energy technologies.”