Clean Energy 101 Bootcamp

The Clean Energy Leadership Institute, in partnership with the Duke University Energy Initiative, is pleased to announce the inaugural Clean Energy 101 Bootcamp on Saturday, August 12, 2017!

The Clean Energy 101 Bootcamp is designed to give current students, recent graduates, and those interested in pursuing a career in clean energy an introduction to fundamental concepts of clean energy technology, finance, business development and policy.

The Bootcamp will also offer extensive opportunities to network and learn from current professionals about what it means to work in government, industry, advocacy, science, and entrepreneurship roles across the clean energy sector.

Event Details

Date/Time: Saturday, August 12, 2017 from 9am – 5:30pm

Location: Duke’s Washington D.C. office, located at 1201 Pennsylvania Ave NW


  • Interactive sessions on Technology Innovation; Policy, Science & Society; and Finance and Business
  • Facilitated networking with professionals in different sectors across the clean energy space
  • Specialized energy practicum where attendees will work together with CELI Fellows and theDuke University Energy Initiative to solve a challenge facing the clean energy space. Prizes will be awarded to top teams.

Registration is capped at 50 attendees. The registration fee is $50 for general admission, and $40 for current students.


Questions? E-mail


Clean Energy 101 – Agenda & Speakers

Introduction and Registration

8:30 – 9:00: Registration and Arrival

9:00 – 9:30: Keynote Speakers and Introduction

  • Alexandra Sutton Lawrence: Duke University Energy Initiative
  • Becca Ward: Clean Energy Leadership Institute

Session 1

9:30 – 10:45: Grid Technology and Innovation

  • This session will feature an overview of the electric grid, including grid vulnerabilities, grid reliability, different types of energy technologies and power sources, and will discuss how the grid is evolving with clean energy technologies.
  • Speakers:
    • Parag Nathaney: Consulting Associate at Charles River Associates
    • Cara Marcy: Renewable Electricity Analyst in the Office of Energy Analysis at the U.S. Energy Information Administration
    • Torrey Beek: Program Analyst, Department of Energy and Environment for the DC Government

Session 2

10:45 – 12:00: Policy, Science and Society

  • This session will cover the key policies that are driving the adoption of clean energy at a international, federal, and state level. The session will provide case studies of policies in practice, and discuss coalitions building that drives the development of policy, including the science, politics, and cultural movements of how policy is formed.
  • Speakers:
    • Mary Shoemaker: State Policy Analyst, American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy
    • Cindy Zhu: Fellow in the Building Technologies Office at the US Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
    • Stephanie Doyle: Senior Outreach Liaison at Citizens’ Climate Lobby
    • Becca Ward: Legislative Assistant in U.S. Senate for Energy and Environmental Policy
    • Marina Yakhnis: Renewable Energy Specialist at RTI international

Open Networking Lunch

12:00 – 1:30: Facilitated networking event

  • This lunch will be a structured opportunity to meet with our speakers and other prominent clean energy professionals throughout the industry, including:
    • Sam Polino: Director of Solar Co-ops, Community Power Network
    • Leah Fisher: Clean energy analyst supporting the U.S. Department of Energy’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program
    • Ade Sawyer: Communications Strategist at Weber Shandwick

Session 3

1:30 – 2:45: Finance

  • This session will give a broad overview of the world of project vs. corporate finance in renewable energy, including common financing tools, and limits to certain incentives.  
  • Speakers:
    • Gerard Neely, PACE Financial Servicing, Manager of Maryland Commercial PACE
    • Jessica Robbins Director of Structured Finance at Sol Systems
    • Brian Hogan: Project Development Coordinator at New Columbia Solar



Energy Challenge

3:00 – 5:00: Energy Challenge

  • Participants will be placed into teams and guided by one or more of our speakers to compete in an engaging and fun energy challenge based off the materials presented during the bootcamp, and that will attempt to address a real world energy problem.
  • Prizes and bragging rights will be awarded to the top teams.

Wrap up & Happy Hour

5:00: Closing remarks from Becca Ward (Clean Energy Leadership Institute)

Join us for happy hour nearby with more CELI Fellows and energy professionals!