Governor McAuliffe Announces Major Solar Projects at Virginia Private Colleges

August 24, 2017


August 23, 2017

Andy Poarch
(804) 564-2566 (cell)

Governor McAuliffe Announces Major Solar Projects at Virginia Private Colleges

- U.S. Department of Energy Program Supports VA Private Colleges Advancing Solar Energy -

RICHMOND (August 23, 2017) – Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced the signing of multiple large-scale solar energy contracts by Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (CICV) member schools.  CICV received funding from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Sunshot Initiative for a Solar Market Pathways Grant, which will help support bringing solar energy to CICV member schools. 

The announcement took place at Virginia Union University, one of four schools statewide which have signed contracts with the selected vendor.  The other three schools are: Lynchburg College, Randolph-Macon College and Washington and Lee University.  Twelve additional schools are participating in the DOE grant project, and CICV anticipates that these schools will sign contracts in the coming months to install solar panels on their campuses.  Please see below for a full list of all 16 participating CICV member schools. 

“This event highlights the leadership of Virginia’s private colleges in embracing renewable energy,” said Robert Lambeth, President of the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (CICV)

“Beyond making our facilities more energy efficient, these solar installations also will serve as a ‘living classroom’ for our students pursuing careers in this tremendous growth industry.  Our faculty and students will have access to industry-leading engineering and scientific discoveries that are driving solar technology advancements.  CICV is excited to be able to give our students first-hand access to these innovations, which will provide them with valuable, hands-on experience that will translate to careers in renewable energy.  Renewable energy is an increasingly large piece of our country’s power generation mix.  Through the Sunshot Initiative, CICV’s students will have access to the tools and training to enter this high-growth workforce.”

Virginia’s private colleges have been the Commonwealth’s trailblazers, not just in the higher education community but among all public and private sector institutions, in adopting renewable energy.  These advances have spanned a variety of clean energy sources, including solar and others.  Six CICV schools have signed contracts with Collegiate Clean Energy for electricity generated by landfill gas.  The solar projects supported by the DOE’s Sunshot Initiative will build on more than 660 kW of prior solar installations at the following CICV member schools in recent years: Eastern Mennonite University, Washington & Lee University, University of Richmond, Randolph-Macon College and Virginia Union University. 

Through a partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy, the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia will develop and implement its Solar Market Pathways collaboration and install solar panels at member colleges.  These solar programs will provide CICV member schools with state-of-the-art solar technology and educational opportunities for students to learn more about renewable energy.  The announcement today highlighted the innovative efforts of Virginia’s private colleges to help put the Commonwealth on the path to a clean energy future.

List of 16 CICV member schools participating in the DOE Solar Market Pathways grant program:

Appalachian School of Law

Bridgewater College

Eastern Mennonite University

Emory and Henry College

Ferrum College

Hampton University

Hollins University

Lynchburg College

Mary Baldwin University

Marymount University

Randolph College

Randolph-Macon College

Roanoke College

Shenandoah University

Virginia Union University

Washington and Lee University

Click here to view pictures of the event taken by Virginia Union University school photographer, Ayasha Sledge.


About the Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (CICV)

The Council of Independent Colleges in Virginia (CICV) was founded in 1971 and is a nonprofit organization representing 28 accredited nonprofit independent colleges and universities in Virginia. CICV advocates for its member institutions and their students, encourages collaboration among member colleges, conducts research on the role of independent higher education and promotes the contributions of Virginia’s independent colleges to the public.  To learn more, please visit http://cicv.org/.