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Navajo Technical University
Lowerpoint Road, State Hwy 371
Crownpoint NM 87313

Phone: 505.786.4100
Fax: 505.786.5644

 

Chinle Instructional Site
PO Box 849, Chinle AZ, 86503
Phone: 928.674.5764
Fax: 928.674.5700

 

Teec Nos Pos Instructional Site
PO Box 1203, Teec Nos Pos, AZ 86514
Phone: 928.656.3600
Fax: 928.656.3596

 

Kirtland Instructional Site
540 Road 6580, Kirtland, NM 87417
Phone: 505.598.4580

 

Zuni Instructional Site
67 301 North, Zuni, NM 87327
Phone: 505.782.6010 or 6022

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Ojo Encino, NM - From March 26 – March 28, students from Navajo Technical University’s Energy Systems and Electrical Engineering programs collaborated with the Colorado-based company GRID Alternatives to install solar panels at a residence in Ojo Encino, NM. The three-day community service project called, “Spring Break Solar Installation,” involved students from regional universities to set up solar systems at four select homes at no cost to home owners.


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Navajo Technical students Tydrin Wauneka (Right) and Darrick Lee (left) adjusting the photovoltaic panels during the installation. GRID Alternatives were on-site with the students to share proper techniques and knowledge about solar panel installations.

“Alternative energy is now becoming a significant discussion in all our communities across the nation and most importantly on Navajo,” said Ray Griego, Energy Systems instructor at NTU. “We have been moving steadily from fossil fuel here on the Navajo Nation, and this shift presents the challenge for our younger generation to explain how to successfully accomplish the transition.”

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Navajo Technical University student Taven Chavez (front left) helps dig the trench for electrical lines. GRID Alternative representatives and Navajo Technical University’s Energy Stystems students worked together to install the Solar Grid Tied Systema at Franklin Pinto’s residence in Ojo Encino.

GRID Alternatives has done projects in Ojo Encino for the last several years, installing solar systems for low-income families. This year, Navajo Technical University students Darrick Lee, Tydrin Wauneka, Lyndon James, and Taven Chavez volunteered to assist in the effort. Each day students received orientation about the project before going to the house of Franklin Pinto for the installation of the grid tied system.

“They are a very nice group of individuals working on this solar panels being placed near my home. They told me it will reduce my electric bill,” said Mr. Pinto about the solar panel system that is capable of generating up to 350 watts of power. “I’m glad they selected me for this because it is beneficial to our community. Some of us still don’t have power out here and these solar systems can deliver power to those in need.”

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L-R, NTU Energy Systems Instructor Ray Griego, Taven Chavez, Lyndon James, Tydrin Wauneka, Darrick Lee. Mr. Ray Griego and NTU students stand in front of the Tied Grid Solar Panel installed at Franklin Pinto’s residence. Photo courtesy of Grid Alternatives Representative Sara Mayani Barudin.

GRID Alternatives collaborated with the Ojo Encino Chapter house to select the members of the community to receive the solar installation. GRID Alternatives Tribal Program is a non-profit based in Denver, CO with alliances helping specific populations. At the Ojo Encino community project, GRID Alternatives tribal program representatives were on-site to ensure the quality of the installations and provide adequate information for the volunteers and members of the community receiving the solar power systems.

The systems are estimated to reduce energy cost by approximately 60-70%. The projects can range from single rooftop installations to large-scale systems capable of providing energy to a community. The system designs by the teams installed at Ojo Encino were the grid tied system. The system designs were fixed at four homes in the community with NTU students assisting with the final home project.

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Members of Grid Alternatives pose with Navajo Technical University Instructor Ray Griego (third from right) and students after they completed the project at Ojo Encino community. Photo courtesy of Grid Alternatives Representative Sara Mayani Barudin.

Navajo Technical University offers an Associate of Applied Science in Energy Systems and Engineering Technology as well as baccalaureate degrees in Electrical Engineering and Industrial Engineering. The university’s engineering programs was recently endorsed by the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology Inc. or ABET. To learn more about the Energy Systems program contact Program Advisor Ray Griego at rgriego@navajotech.edu or at 505-786-4308. For more information about NTU’s Electrical Engineering program, please contact Dr. Peter Romine at promine@navajotech.edu.

Contact NTU

Navajo Technical University
Lowerpoint Road, State Hwy 371
Crownpoint, NM 87313

Phone: 505.786.4100
Fax: 505.786.5644


Chinle Instructional Site
PO Box 849, Chinle, AZ 86503

Phone: 928.674.5764
Fax: 928.674.5700


Teec Nos Pos Instructional Site
PO Box 1203, Teec Nos Pos, AZ 86514

Phone: 928.656.3600
Fax: 928.656.3596


Kirtland Instructional Site
540 Road 6580, Kirtland, New Mexico 87417

Phone: 505.598.4580


Zuni Instructional Site
67 301 North, Zuni, NM 87327

Phone: 505.782.6010