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Ontario will lead the geothermal world beginning in January 2020 when Fleming College in Lindsay starts classes for what may be the first college certificate program of its kind on Geothermal Systems.

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Fleming has announced that the program is now accepting registrations, and encourages students to apply immediately to ensure your chance to graduate with one of the first ever GES Ontario College Graduate Certificates.

The two-semester program will introduce students to the fundamentals of geothermal energy, the heating and cooling energy loads of buildings, and geothermal resources, including geological formations, groundwater, lakes and rivers. Students also learn the procedures to install loops – grouting techniques and joining the loops to the internal geothermal system.

The first semester of this program will be held at Fleming’s Frost Campus in Lindsay, Ontario. It focuses on the specialized drilling skills and knowledge required to install, maintain and repair the loop field of a geothermal system. This includes construction safety, soil analysis, hydrogeology, drilling, trenching, grouting, and pipe installation. Students undertake hands-on lab and field work, using the on-campus drill rigs.

The second semester, hosted at Fleming’s Sutherland Campus in Peterborough, provides students with the skills and knowledge needed to design, install, maintain and repair the hydronic systems within a building, and connect the system to the loop field.

Labs take place in the state-of-the-art Kawartha Trades and Technology Centre, allowing students to gain hands-on experience in the installation and repair of system components, including hydronics, pipes and electrical. This semester will also introduce students to technologies related to smart home monitoring.

“There has already been a great deal of interest, says David Belsey, Academic Chair at Fleming’s Frost Campus. “ We expect this program to attract interest all the way up the Eastern seaboard, as demand for geothermal continues to accelerate.”

“The geothermal program at Fleming in Lindsay/Peterborough is a triumph for our organization, our province and our country,” says Stan Reitsma, President of the Ontario Geothermal Association. “The long hoped-for geothermal revolution is now well underway worldwide, with plenty of demand in Canada and the USA for this technology, and for qualified professionals.”

“A GES Certificate will become a key credential very quickly. Congratulations to everyone involved in development of this program, including members of the OGA Board and Education committee.”

“The importance of quality education and credible credentials in our industry cannot be overstated. Despite the long history of our technology, the current surge in global interest in decarbonization means we are now seen as a ‘new industry.’ Powerful oil interests still invest heavily every year in misinformation designed to discredit clean energy of any kind. Ensuring we have the skills and successes expected by the public is a critical part of winning that battle.”

Employers and students can find more information on the new program here.