A Solstice fellowship is a unique opportunity to gain professional experience tackling hands-on challenges. Hear more from our fellows below.
Every semester, Solstice welcomes students and recent graduates to the team as part of our Fellowship program. Fellows spend 4-6 months with the organization, helping us further our mission of spreading solar to every American. Four fellows joined the Solstice team in the Fall of 2019, pushing forward outreach, inclusion, marketing, and business development initiatives. As their fellowships drew to a close, we asked them to share more about their experiences working on teams at Solstice. So, the question is:
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What is a Solstice Fellowship Really Like?
Our fall fellows each worked in different departments, got involved in unique projects, and had different goals for their time at Solstice–whether they planned to start a career or head back to school. As our fellows voiced their insights, however, a few common threads arose.
One of the hallmarks of working at Solstice is the commitment to bringing solar to every American, regardless of their means. Our fall fellows expressed pride in working toward a more equitable and renewable future. “I knew I wanted to work for a company that had a mission at its core, and Solstice more than delivered on that,” said Andrew Robitaille, a Low-Income Inclusion Fellow who worked to push solar forward in underserved communities. Margot, Solstice’s Outreach Fellow, found a similar motivation in her work: “It inspires and motivates me every day that the work I am doing at Solstice directly relates to decreasing reliance on fossil fuels and making our planet greener.”
Fellows who join Solstice’s team aren’t looking for an average semester-long internship. As a fellow, students and recent graduates take on projects well beyond the typical scope for someone with relatively little professional experience. With guidance and instruction, fellows see initiatives through from start to finish, working with multiple stakeholders to make a tangible impact on the company. “Over the past 6 months, I have learned more than I thought there was to learn about community solar…I have been intimidated, yet grateful, for the amount of responsibility entrusted to me,” said Sarah, our fall Business Development Fellow. Solstice employees are regularly challenged to break barriers and take risks–after all, that’s what we’re doing as a young company in the age-old electricity industry.
A Culture of Collaboration
Working at a startup means there are fewer barriers to collaboration. Quite the opposite of barriers, in fact; collaboration is essential to Solstice’s success. That starts with a team atmosphere that brings people together, and really solidifies with shared projects and goals that require input from each team.Like Andrew told us, “Being a startup, the work at Solstice is always exciting, with new projects always coming up, and something interesting always happening in the office!”
All of our departments work closely with one another to meet their objectives, and Solstice fellows play a crucial role in that teamwork. “I have worked on projects with every team, if not every person in the organization,” said Sarah about her business development role. Margot added: “Through my projects, I have been able to collaborate with different teams at Solstice, and understand all the moving parts of the company.” The result is that, at the end of their time with Solstice, each of our fellows felt they’d learned not just about the particulars of their role, but about any other aspects of a small business in which they take interest.
“Being a fellow here has given me access to a wide range of skill sets in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors and allowed me to gain a deeper understanding of the renewable energy industry,” Andrew said after his time working on Solstice’s nonprofit team. Through close collaboration with teammates, fellows learn to tackle business challenges that will push them forward to their next step. “Solstice is the perfect place to grow alongside the company,” Sarah said. “You always know that you are doing work to impact the organization and the future of clean energy.”
Should I Become a Fellow?
Fellowships at Solstice are a great way to get professional, hands-on experience. We believe in the growth of all of our employees–fellows have access to our Lunch and Learn program, our mentorship program, and more. When a fellow’s goals align with the organization’s, Solstice has a strong track record of converting fellows to long-term staff members. About 20% of our current staff began as a fellow!
We typically hire fellows every January-April, May-August, and September-December. Our Summer 2020 fellowships will be opening in January 2020. Our outreach, marketing, operations, and nonprofit teams will all be hiring. If you are interested in learning about any of our fellowships at Solstice, please visit solstice.us/careers or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.