Education & Training

Building operation education courses can help improve energy efficiency knowledge, the basic understanding of optimizing the controls of a building, and how to implement changes to create a comfortable, energy-efficient, and environmentally friendly space. Some training courses can also count towards professional certifications such as the Building Operator Certification, LEED certification, and others.

SMECO offers pre-approved applicants financial incentives that cover 80% of enrollment costs or up to a maximum of $1,000 per course, whichever is less, for approved building operator and maintenance training.

Building Operator Education

Operating a building at the highest level of efficiency can be challenging. The increasing complexities of interdependent building systems—HVAC motors, frequency drives, lighting—require building operators to possess a comprehensive understanding of how the systems work together in order to optimize energy efficiency.

SMECO offers financial incentives to help cover the cost for approved building operation and maintenance education courses. The incentives cover a percentage of training course(s) enrollment fees or tuition and are distributed upon course completion. You can choose to take courses related to equipment upgrades and replacements involving variable frequency drives (VFDs), lighting retrofits, lighting controls, and other energy-saving measures. Review the terms and conditions for additional details.

Who Should Participate?

SMECO designed its incentive offering specifically for individuals who have 2 or more years of experience in building operations and support facilities within the SMECO service territory.

Building engineers, stationary engineers, maintenance supervisors, maintenance workers, facility coordinators, HVAC technicians, electricians, operations supervisors and technicians, and others in the field of facility operations and maintenance (O&M) are encouraged to apply.

In cases where the applicant is a contractor, a representative of the SMECO customer must provide a letter, on company letterhead, stating that the contractor is assigned to work at the customer’s facility and that the SMECO customer supports the contractor’s participation in the Building Operation Education Program.


Eligibility for receiving a financial incentive is based on work experience and education, as well as completion of courses, examinations, and on-the-job projects. In order to participate in the program and receive a financial incentive, applicants must be:

  • Employed in a position of responsibility for the energy management of the facility or have the potential to influence the building’s energy performance
  • Assigned to work at a commercial and/or industrial facility within the SMECO service territory and be present at that facility for at least 50% of their working hours


Pre-approval is required for all BOE applications. Each approved applicant will be eligible to receive a financial incentive that covers 80% of enrollment costs or up to a maximum of $1,000 per certification, whichever is less. Associated costs, including but not limited to travel, food, lodging, test fees, etc., are not eligible for incentives. The applicant must submit proof of attendance within 30 days of course completion by providing a certificate of completion (or similar document), as well as a course invoice in order to qualify for an incentive.

All applicants must first meet minimum eligibility requirements mandated by the associated learning institution prior to submitting an incentive application with SMECO to ensure that all course and certification standards have been met through the learning institution. Furthermore, all applicants must apply for and receive pre-approval from SMECO before enrolling in or attending a course. Separate applications must be submitted for each course an applicant is seeking to pursue.

SMECO has pre-qualified certain courses from specific training organizations, which are specified below. In addition, SMECO will review all courses proposed by an applicant and his or her employer. Only courses with a concentration on electrical energy conservation within buildings are eligible for incentives. Courses with an emphasis on other energy sources, such as gas, or water conservation, etc., are not eligible.

Pre-Qualified Courses

Association of Energy Engineers

  • Certified Energy Manager (CEM)
  • Certified Energy Manager in Training (EMIT)
  • Certified Building Commissioning Professional (CBCP)
  • Certified Lighting Efficiency Professional (CLEP)
  • Existing Building Commissioning Professional (EBCP)
  • Certified Business Energy Professional (BEP)
  • Certified Energy Auditor (CEA)
  • Energy Efficiency Practitioner (EEP)

AABC Commissioning Group

  • Certified Commissioning Authority (CxA)

BOMI International

  • The Design, Operation, and Maintenance of Building Systems, Part I
  • The Design, Operation, and Maintenance of Building Systems, Part II
  • Air Handling, Water Treatment, and Plumbing Systems
  • Energy Management and Controls
  • Refrigeration Systems and Accessories
  • Electrical Systems and Illumination
  • High-Performance Sustainable Building Principles
  • High-Performance Sustainable Building Practices
  • High-Performance Sustainable Building Investments
  • High-Performance Sustainable Building: HVAC Optimization
  • Fundamentals of Facilities Management
  • Boilers, Heating Systems, and Applied Mathematics

Clean Energy Center (CEC)

  • Building Operator Certification® Level I
  • Building Operator Certification® Level II
  • Fundamentals of Energy Efficient Building Operations
  • Commercial Building Re-Tuning

Energy Management Association (EMA)

  • Energy Management Professional

International Association of Lighting Management Companies (NALMCO)

  • Certified Apprentice Lighting Technician (CALT)
  • Certified Senior Lighting Technician (CSLT)

International Facility Management Association (IFMA)

  • Certified Facility Manager (CFM)

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)

  • LEED-AP-O&M: Accredited Professional Certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – Building Operations & Maintenance)
  • LEED-AP BD&C: Accredited Professional Certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – Building Design Construction)

National Association of Power Engineers

  • Plant Equipment and Operations
  • Air Conditioning I, II, III
  • Heat Pumps
  • Refrigeration
  • Electric Motor
  • The Engineer & Management
  • Environmental Impact & Engineering
  • Controls I, III

Upcoming Courses

Fundamentals of Energy Efficient Building Operations

  • January 25 – 27

Register for the Fundamentals of Energy Efficient Building Operations course!

Building Operator Certification Level I 

  • February 8

Register for the Building Operator Certification Level I course!

Commercial Building Re-tuning

  • March 16

Register for the Commercial Building Re-tuning course!

How to Participate

  1. Identify a training course or certification with a concentration on the efficiency or conservation of electrical energy in commercial or industrial buildings – Refer to SMECO’s list of pre-qualified courses and/or propose alternative courses
  2. Complete the BOE application and submit it to SMECO, along with all necessary documentation – SMECO will review the course and determine eligibility
  3. After receiving pre-approval, the applicant may attend the course(s)
  4. Upon course completion, the applicant must submit the invoice for the course(s) and provide a copy of the certificate of completion or alternate documentation from the instructor, organization, school, or company administering the course
  5. Once SMECO receives all necessary documentation, an incentive payment is processed – Payment occurs within about 6 to 8 weeks of final approval

Courses & Certifications Not Currently Pre-Qualified

Applicants may propose a course or certification not currently pre-qualified within the program. Training courses that take place outside of the local area are eligible. The course location may be determined by the applicant and his or her employer. Pre-approval is required for all proposed courses that are not currently pre-qualified. The decision to approve or deny a course is at the discretion of SMECO. The applicant should allow about 10 business days to receive notice of course eligibility.

Business Solutions Service Provider Training

SMECO is pleased to partner with local Service Providers to promote energy efficiency services to our business customers. Service Providers help raise awareness of our energy efficiency programs and inform customers about the opportunities and incentives available.

For more information, please call (866) 235-6044.

Service Provider Training Form

Sign up to receive information on upcoming training sessions and learn about new opportunities to receive incentives for energy-efficient projects and equipment.


Contact Name(Required)

Building Tune-Up Service Provider Training

The SMECO Building Tune-up Program offers financial incentives to identify and implement relatively low-cost operational and maintenance improvements to existing buildings. The building tune-up process monitors, troubleshoots and adjusts electrical, mechanical, and control systems to optimize energy performance. The financial incentives cover up to 75% of service costs, with a per-project cap of $15,000 for small buildings or $30,000 for large buildings.

Building Tune-Up Service Provider Training Form

Please check back soon for upcoming trainings to learn how to participate in the program and help your customers save energy without the hassle of replacing functioning equipment. Complete the registration form below and we will keep your information on file and notify you when the next training date is scheduled.


Contact Name(Required)

Technical Bulletins

SMECO is pleased to provide quarterly technical bulletins that provide safety and programmatic tips for conducting field audits and successful inspections of your energy efficiency projects.

EmPower Maryland logo

EmPOWER Maryland programs are funded by a charge on your energy bill. EmPOWER programs can help you reduce your energy consumption and save you money. Learn more about EmPOWER and how you can participate.