Introduction to Sustainable Homes & Careers

| Offered in-person via training program partners | NO COST for program participants

Learn about approaches to high performance construction and careers pathways into the residential sector


To meet current and future demand, the construction industry workforce will need to be more diverse, skilled, and younger than ever before. Sustainable practices create greater interest among those looking to enter the industry, and those who gain knowledge of energy efficient practices and a green credential are more attractive and valuable to future employers.

Earth Advantage (with support from the Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund (PCEF) and Energy Trust of Oregon) works with our community-based partners to deliver customized training and a certificate of knowledge to prepare tradespersons for a career in green building. We provide flexible training options to support a wide range of program types (youth training, pre-apprenticeship, higher education, and professional development) and delivery methods (in-person, virtual, on-demand) and work with our partners to shape the curriculum to suit the needs and priorities of an individual program. Our goals are to support our partner organizations and enhance their excellent training programs to ensure these new tradespersons have an understanding of green building approaches and career pathways in residential construction.

The 2-day training consists of the following training modules that introduce students to green building market activity, principles, approaches, trades, and career pathways:
  • Green Building Trends & Trajectory
  • Green Careers in Building Trades
    • Career Pathways, Relevant Credentials & Trainings
  • 5 Pillars of Green Building (Health, Materials, Water, Land & Energy)
  • Building Science & High Performance Envelopes 
  • Site Visit to Green Certified Project
    Home Retrofit & Weatherization
  • Energy Assessments & Scores 

Hands-on activities involve performing blower door testing, utilizing infrared cameras, reviewing plan sets, working with a table top house model, and assembling high performance wall mockups. On-site elements include performing a site visit to an under-construction green certified affordable housing project that provides Q&A opportunities with the construction team and instructor.

Recommended Audience

Students / New Workers / Subcontractors

Continuing Education

Flexible based on partner program structure. CEs available from AIA, CCB, ICC, BPI, and more. 


James Metoyer | EnerCity Collaborative
Laura Klement | Enerstructa
Anna Hilbruner | Elise Energy Solutions
Megan Greenauer | Energy Trust of Oregon
Zach Erdmann | Premium Efficiency
Robert Robinson | Robinson Construction

Learning Objectives

Attendees will:
  • Learn about what green construction means and why it is important in today's building industry
  • Understand the common problems found in standard construction
  • Explore green building approaches and technologies used in both new construction and home retrofits
  • Benefit from a foundational understanding of building science
  • See green principles put into practice first-hand during on-site project tour  
  • Gain the info and resources necessary to explore trades and job opportunities in green construction 
  • Obtain EA's 'Green Building Trainee' credential to highlight their advanced training to prospective employers 

Trainees that complete our 2-day green construction workforce program and pass an accreditation exam will earn our ‘Green Building Trainee’ certificate of knowledge. The credential provides a certificate of completion, logos and a listing in our  registry of designated professionals that can be included in a job seeker's portfolio and provided to prospective employers. Participants, partners and employers have all found value in a professional accreditation provided by Earth Advantage, a trusted third-party green certification program.

Interested in integrating our green trainings into your workforce program? Contact us



Free for partners and participants.

Training made possible thanks to:


Questions? Contact us below or call (503) 968-7160.