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Green Building Technologies Provide Career Paths for Urban Youth

Smart buildings technology software developer partners with Comcast and ECA at Non-profit’s NJ HQ; teaches clean energy tech to local youth thru hands-on training

Providing a pathway to future jobs in the growing field of building energy management, which encompasses clean energy technologies, IoT, and ESG, Logical Buildings, a smart buildings technology software developer and services provider, has created a curriculum to train young people at Hopeworks, a community nonprofit based in Camden. Working on the Hopeworks headquarters at 808 Market Street as a model, the hands-on curriculum demonstrates groundbreaking energy visualization and management through Logical Building’s SmartKit AI™ toolkit, enabled by Comcast’s device-to-cloud platform, Machine Q, and Energy Coordinating Agency’s (ECA) software.

The classes, combined with a mentoring program, are teaching students to work on multiple AI platforms in real time. The program, which offers G.E.D. credits, provides practical, hands-on training to young people between the ages of 17- to 26 years.

“Comcast came to us with an idea to design a course using the actual building in which Hopeworks is headquartered,” says Jeff Hendler, CEO of Logical Buildings. “Together, we have accomplished an unparalleled training experience in a physical environment. It’s a pragmatic course to help young people find meaningful high-tech work in the present, a gateway to exceptional career paths, and social justice for an underserved community.”

In addition to practical training on the Logical Buildings SmartKit™ AI platform, which already services the building with smart energy management, the classes cover the fundamentals of coding and creating innovative website tools. The curriculum also includes assignments pertinent to the three hosts’ platforms, such as the utility of the hardware, mapping and analyzing critical data, and understanding mobile deliverables. Comcast was responsible for donating all the hardware for the program.

Hopeworks is a social enterprise that uses technology, healing, and entrepreneurship to transform lives. On average, over 99 percent of the youth entering Hopeworks are unemployed and making less than $400 annually. Youth completing the program typically earn more than $41,000 annually, with an almost 90 percent, 12-month retention rate in their jobs. Hopeworks’ unique trauma-informed approach, combined with high-demand, high wage technical training and paid work experience, helps young people not only get jobs, but keep them. For more than two decades, its programs have helped transform the lives of both the participants and their families.

“Logical Buildings knows what we at Hopeworks see everyday — the youth of Camden, who are often overlooked by other tech companies, are the best employees a company could want,” says Dan Rhoton, Hopeworks’ executive director. “We are so grateful to Logical Buildings and Comcast for this partnership.”

Adds Abhay Ambati, senior vice president, Technology Services at Logical Buildings, “It is amazing how quickly these students connect the practical use of such familiar devices as smartphones with the sophisticated applications of our smart building platforms. It is a window into the skilled workforce of tomorrow.”

Logical Buildings has included an internship program as part of the curriculum to further prepare participants for success in this expanding field. In addition, Logical Buildings is providing the built environment with the necessary technological tools to achieve corporate ESG goals.

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