Top HVAC Trade Schools Baileyville KS

How to Select the Right Heating and Cooling Certification Course near Baileyville Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Baileyville KSOnce you have made a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning professional, the next step is to find an HVAC trade school near Baileyville KS. But with so many to select from, how do you select the ideal one to obtain the training that you need? A number of potential students will make their selection based exclusively on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. Although these are necessary concerns, they are not the only ones to take into account. Just some of the other factors that you need to look into are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and other criteria will be discussed in more detail later within this article. But before we tackle how to select an HVAC trade school, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Specialist

Baileyville KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is commonly used in the industry that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, though every state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Obtaining professional certification is not mandatory, but a voluntary means for Baileyville KS HVAC techs to prove that they are highly proficient and experienced in their area of specialization. There are many recognized certifications within the industry that are available. Following are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a competency examination and can be received in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have 3 years of experience as well as a passing result on the professional level examination. As with NATE, certifications are made available in multiple specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for specialists that work with refrigerants. There are three forms of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing may be required in your area, and you may also desire to obtain certification, it’s important that you enroll in an HVAC technical school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be working with refrigerants, make sure that the school you choose readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Schools

radiator heater in Baileyville KS homeThere are a number of alternatives available for HVAC training in a trade or technical school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the minimum period of time, often achieved in as little as six months, however some courses are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive edge in the job market and will deliver more in-depth training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief description of each option offered near Baileyville KS.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC technicians. They provide a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program provides a more detailed understanding of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Generally requiring two years to complete, a number of degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is geared more towards a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional four year program. In addition to being taught how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Choosing the appropriate credential program will be dependent on what your long term career objectives are, in addition to the time and money that you have to commit. One possibility is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the field in Baileyville KS, later returning to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, be sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Courses Online

Baileyville KS student attending HVAC school onlineAttending an HVAC program online is one alternative in obtaining your training and receiving a certificate or degree. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete hands on training. A number also offer internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes may be attended via the internet, this alternative may be a more convenient solution for some Baileyville KS students that are short on time. And a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even commuting expenses from Baileyville and study supplies may be lessened, helping to make schooling more economical. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family obligations have left you with little time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it more convenient to fit school into your active schedule.

What to Ask HVAC Trade Schools

Questions to ask Baileyville KS HVAC training schoolsOnce you have selected the type of degree or certificate that you would like to attain, either on campus or online, you can begin to decrease your list of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Baileyville KS area and throughout the USA to choose from. That’s why it is very important to have a list of key qualifiers when making school evaluations. As formerly stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the first two aspects you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC technical schools in the Baileyville KS area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for instance HVAC technology. Make certain that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited programs. Also, some states mandate that the HVAC training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A low completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the course and quit. It could also indicate that the instructors were not qualified to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which can result in more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Baileyville KS HVAC employers to help grads secure apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Numerous HVAC training programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have working relationships with local Baileyville KS HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC specialist you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Baileyville KS HVAC contracting company if they can provide some suggestions. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Baileyville KS home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there might be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you get as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to several of the students and get their comments concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to some of the instructors and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Baileyville KS, verify that the schools you are comparing provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Baileyville KS?

Perhaps you are considering enrolling in an HVAC training program in the Baileyville Kansas area.  If so, you may find the following background information about the location of your new school campus both interesting and informative.

Baileyville, Kansas

The community was founded as Haytown, then renamed by Willis J. Bailey and his father to Baileyville. In 1903, Willis became the 16th Governor of Kansas Willis J. Bailey.[1] The first post office in Baileyville was established in 1880.[2]

Top HVAC Trade Schools Baileyville KS

Selecting the right HVAC school program is an important beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Top HVAC Trade Schools. However, as we have covered in this article, you should pick an Heating and Cooling school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC field. Other features to look for are ample practical training and state-of-the-art facilities. You need to go to each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Also, inquire about scheduling choices and whether or not evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options too. If you ask the right questions as we have detailed in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC contractor in Baileyville KS.

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