TDEC OEP’s First Graduating Class of Professional Energy Managers

October is National Energy Awareness Month, which serves to underscore how critical energy is to our prosperity, security, and environmental well-being. Throughout the month of October, TDEC’s Office of Energy Programs will highlight a variety of case studies and tips to promote energy conservation, resiliency, and smart energy management. Through these efforts, we rededicate ourselves to a more conscious use of energy, so that we can continue to strive for a cleaner, stronger, and more secure future.

Effective energy management can help reduce energy consumption across a portfolio of building stock, minimizing energy costs and mitigating environmental effects. In fact, most organizations can achieve annual energy savings of at least 2-10 percent through better energy management practices.

This past spring, TDEC OEP provided its first ever tuition-free Professional Energy Manager (PEM) training to employees from local and state government, as well as from state colleges and public schools. This unique professional development opportunity helps to enhance the knowledge of the energy management field, and is in line with the long-term goals of the EmPower TN initiative.[1]

The coursework of the PEM training enables energy professionals to understand and implement energy efficiency solutions in buildings, industrial plants, and data centers. PEM is one of the longest-running energy management training programs in the world and offers a credible credential to complement an individual’s professional experience.

Group image of the 2016 EmPower TN PEM Program cohort

Group image of the 2016 EmPower TN PEM Program cohort

A few of the topics covered during the training include: energy modeling and calculations, HVAC systems, electric utility rates and calculations, how to establish an effective energy management program, codes and standards, legislation, energy assessments and instrumentation, natural gas procurement, and renewable energy. Upon passing the final exam, participants earn a nationally recognized designation of Professional Energy Manager through the Institute of Energy Professionals.

26 participants completed the training, and each passed the exam. As part of the training, each participant is required to create a strategic energy plan that can be implemented in a facility they oversee or for clients they serve.  TDEC OEP looks forward to seeing the results these plans will yield, as well as the continued impact of program participants’ work.

TDEC OEP will offer this professional development opportunity again in 2017. Eligible participants include employees of state or local government, k-12 schools, utilities, non-profits, and NGOs who provide energy management related technical assistance (e.g., audits, strategic energy planning, energy project / program development and implementation) to the public, commercial, and/or industrial sectors. The application window is now open and applications submissions are due by 5:00 pm Central on December 12, 2016. To access the application and to view details related to the training session location and dates, click here. For program-related questions, please contact Jaclyn Mothupi at

[1] The EmPower TN Initiative is Governor Bill Haslam’s statewide “lead-by-example” initiative to reduce energy costs and consumption across State owned and managed buildings and facilities by measuring and controlling energy use, investing in improved energy efficiency, creating an operational environment of excellence, and promoting energy cost savings across the State through conservation and efficiency in local government and the private sector.