Heating and Air Conditioning School Concordia KS

How to Choose the Right Heating and Cooling College near Concordia Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Concordia KSNow that you have made a decision on a career as a heating and cooling professional, the next action is to find an HVAC vocational school near Concordia KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you choose the best one to obtain the training that you require? Some potential students will make their selection based entirely on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their home. While these are necessary concerns, they are not the only ones to investigate. A few of the other factors that you need to investigate are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and additional benchmarks will be addressed in more detail later within this article. But before we discuss how to choose an HVAC vocational school, let’s take a look at what a heating and air conditioning technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Tech

Concordia 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 provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically mandated to be licensed, however each state and local municipality has its own requirements. Earning professional certification is not mandatory, but an alternative way for Concordia KS HVAC specialists to demonstrate that they are exceptionally qualified and knowledgeable in their area of expertise. There are a number of acknowledged certifications within the trade that are offered. Here are a few of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is achieved by passing a proficiency examination and may be earned in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience as well as a passing score on the professional level examination. As with NATE, certifications are offered in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for techs that work with refrigerants. There are three forms of certification available, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing could be mandated in your location, and you may also desire to earn certification, it’s essential that you enroll in an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will most likely be working with refrigerants, make certain that the program you pick prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Training Programs

radiator heater in Concordia KS homeThere are a variety of choices available for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the least amount of time, typically achieved in as little as six months, although some programs 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 may provide a competitive advantage for securing employment and will furnish more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a short summary of each credential offered near Concordia KS.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level residential or commercial HVAC technicians. They provide a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more exhaustive understanding of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Usually taking two years to finish, many degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is tailored more towards a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a conventional four year program. In addition to mastering how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Picking the ideal credential program will be based on what your future career goals are, in addition to the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One approach is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Concordia KS, subsequently going back to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Courses Online

Concordia KS student attending HVAC school onlineChoosing an HVAC school online is one approach in obtaining your education and earning a degree or certificate. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to participate in practical training. Many also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be participated in via the internet, this alternative may be a more accessible solution for many Concordia KS students that are short on time. And many online degree programs are cheaper than other traditional alternatives. Even commuting expenses from Concordia and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more budget-friendly. And many online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with limited time to attend classes, maybe an online HVAC degree program will make it easier to accommodate school into your hectic schedule.

Questions For HVAC Certification Classes

Questions to ask Concordia KS HVAC training schoolsOnce you have picked the type of degree or certificate that you want to earn, either online or on campus, you can start to limit your list of schools. As you are probably aware, there are numerous HVAC technical schools in the Concordia KS area and throughout the USA to select from. That’s why it is imperative to have a list of relevant qualifiers when making school comparisons. As formerly stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will most likely be the initial two variables you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC vocational schools in the Concordia KS area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Make certain that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you receive a superior education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, a number of states require that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It could also signify that the teachers were not qualified to train the students. It’s similarly essential 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 will not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Concordia KS HVAC employers to assist graduates secure apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC trade programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or trade unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with local Concordia KS HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the school facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Concordia KS HVAC contractor if they can give you some suggestions. Also bear in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Concordia KS residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there can be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between students and instructors. Speak to some of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Concordia KS, verify that the programs you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

Considering an HVAC School near Concordia KS?

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

Concordia, Kansas

Concordia is a city in and the county seat of Cloud County, Kansas, United States.[7] It is located along the Republican River in the Smoky Hills region of the Great Plains in North Central Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 5,395.[8] Concordia is home of the Cloud County Community College and the Nazareth Convent and Academy.

Concordia holds the distinction of being elected the county seat before the town was created.[9] The founder of the town, James M. Hagaman had created a complete layout of the town on paper including streets, blocks, courthouse, and parks. The name "Concordia" was chosen because a member of the early group of promoters ("Cap" Snyder) had once lived in Concordia, Missouri.

December 1869 was the first election for the county seat with Concordia, Clyde and the now defunct town Sibley. Without a clear majority, a second election was held between Concordia and Sibley on January 4, 1870. Concordia was declared the winner over Sibley 165 votes to 129.

Heating and Air Conditioning School Concordia KS

Selecting the ideal HVAC training course is a critical beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Heating and Air Conditioning School. However, as we have addressed in this post, you should pick an Heating and Cooling training program and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC community. Other factors to look for are plenty of practical training and state-of-the-art facilities. You should check out each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to explore the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling options and if night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And remember to inquire about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC professional in Concordia KS.

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