Navajo Technical University Program Profile

Program Name: Energy Systems

Information Updated January 2018

Raymond Griego, Navajo Technical University Sustainable Energy Program Lead Faculty Member

Lead Faculty

Raymond Griego is the lead faculty for the Energy Systems Program at Navajo Technical University

Mission Statement

Navajo Technical University’s mission is to provide University readiness programs, certificates, associate, baccalaureate, and graduate degrees.
Students, faculty, and staff will provide value to the Diné community through research, community engagement, service learning, and activities designed to foster cultural and environmental preservation and sustainable economic development. The University is committed to a high quality, student-oriented, hands-on learning environment based on the Diné cultural principles: Nitsáhákees, Nahátá, Īína, Siihasin.

Program Information

Geographic Area of Students

Navajo Reservation, New Mexico, & Arizona


Gender: Male 86%, Female 13%

Ethnicity: Navajo, Native American

Veterans: 1-3%

# of Students in Program

29 as of Fall 2018

# of Faculty Members Teaching Energy

1 Full-Time

Degrees / Diplomas / Certificates Offered

Associate Degree in Applied Science – 2 year program

Introductory Course Information

Course Name

Introduction to Solar/Photovoltaics

Delivery Mode(s)


Course Duration

One semester course ERS 102-01
Photovoltaic Theory and Design, 3-hour credit, prerequisites ELC 101 Electrical Theory and MTH 121

# of Credits

3 Credits

Questions & Answers

This program was first introduced and adopted in 2002 as a 1-year certificate program. The development of the curriculum was encouraged and funded by the NASA, United Negro College Fund, Special Programs, Curriculum Improvement Partnership Award Program, CIPA. The Energy Systems program is intended to assist and to provide new emphasis to the areas of applied science, mathematics, technology and engineering for students at our tribal college, Navajo Technical University.

Students learn the fundamentals of electricity, magnetism, photovoltaic electrical systems, and wind generation with emphasis in techniques to harness the earth’s renewable energy sources. Moreover, the design and construction of photovoltaic, wind and hot air solar heating systems enables students to
supplement existing energy needs at home, in their communities and throughout the Navajo Nation.

In 2004 the program expanded from a 1-year certificate to a 2-year AAS degree program. A couple of years ago we partnered with Arizona State University; The NTU/ASU partnership was mentored by the Department of Energy, the National Renewable Energy Lab and Sandia National Lab and is supported by the American Indian Research and Education Initiative (AIREI), the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC).

Modular Building, 1500 sq. ft. Classroom and Lab combined

The job market assessment was conducted several years ago by the program’s advisory committee. The outlook was and is still very positive. Most of the work is the Albuquerque, Denver and Phoenix area. Most of our students are not willing to travel and prefer to stay close to the Navajo Reservation.

Word of mouth, NTU advertisement (radio and newspaper)

I have an informal advisory committee:

Committee Members:

  • Johnny Weiss-Solar Consulting (Co-Founder Solar Energy International)
  • Tim Willink, Grid Alternatives
  • Sandra Begay Campbell, Sandia National Laboratories
  • Dr. Stan Atticity, Sandia National Laboratories
  • Lee Otteni, Bureau of Land Management
  • Steve Chischilly, NTU Faculty (Environmental Science)
  • A. M. Kannan, PHD, Department of Engineering, Arizona State University
  • Ed Eaton, Our Sun Solar
  • Odes Armijo-Caster, Sacred Power Corporation

Honorable Mention
Mark Fitzgerald, Institute for Sustainable Power (instrumental in the creation of the program; deceased)

We do not require internships as part of the program. However, students have the opportunity to apply for internships, and have obtained internships with the DOE, Sandia National Laboratories, NASA, and USDA. Fifty percent of the program’s AAS graduates continue their education to pursue a 4-year degree in engineering here at NTU; 16% are placed in jobs in the energy workforce.

Ready to Learn more?

View the syllabus for Navajo Technical University's Introduction to Solar/Photovoltaics course, or visit Navajo Tech directly for more information on their Applied Associate Degree program.

View Syllabus 🔒Visit Navajo Tech