Heating and Air School Erie KS

How to Choose the Right Heating and Cooling Certification Class near Erie Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Erie KSOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioner specialist, the next step is to look for an HVAC vocational school near Erie KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you decide on the ideal one to get the training that you need? Some future students will make their decision based entirely on the cost of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. While these are important factors to consider, they are not the only ones to evaluate. A few of the other details 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 in this article. But before we examine how to pick an HVAC vocational school, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Pro

Erie KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the industry that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors specialize in the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are generally mandated to be licensed, although each state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Attaining professional certification is not mandatory, but an alternative means for Erie KS HVAC techs to prove that they are exceptionally proficient and accomplished in their area of specialization. There are multiple respected certifications within the field that are offered. Following are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency exam and may be acquired 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 required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience together with a passing score on the professional level examination. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for specialists that work with refrigerants. There are three types of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Considering that licensing may be mandated in your area, and you may also wish to earn certification, it’s imperative that you choose an HVAC technical school that will prepare you for both. And since you will more than likely be working with refrigerants, make certain that the school you pick preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Training Programs

radiator heater in Erie KS homeThere are several options available for HVAC instruction in a technical or trade school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the least period of time, typically accomplished in just six months, however some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree training programs may provide a competitive edge in the job market and will deliver more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief summary of each option offered near Erie KS.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC technicians. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program provides a more comprehensive knowledge of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically requiring two years to finish, some degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is tailored more for a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs require an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional four year program. In addition to mastering how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Choosing the ideal credential program will be based on what your future career goals are, as well as the time and money that you have to invest. One possibility is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Erie KS, subsequently returning to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make certain to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Courses

Erie KS student attending HVAC school onlineAttending an HVAC program online is one alternative to obtaining your training and earning a degree or certificate. Nearly all schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete practical training. Some also offer internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes may be attended via the internet, this approach may be a more convenient solution for some Erie KS students that are short on time. And many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even driving expenses from Erie and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And many 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 less complicated to accommodate school into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Classes

Questions to ask Erie KS HVAC training schoolsOnce you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you would like to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are numerous HVAC trade schools in the Erie KS area and throughout the Country to choose from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a checklist of relevant qualifiers when making school assessments. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will probably be the first two factors you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you should explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC technical schools in the Erie KS area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for instance HVAC technology. Make sure that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you acquire a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, many states require that the HVAC training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A lower completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It may also mean that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Erie KS HVAC employers to help grads secure apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Many HVAC technical programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or trade unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with local Erie KS HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC technician you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Erie KS HVAC contractor if they can provide some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Erie KS residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Speak to a few of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Make sure that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Erie KS, confirm that the schools you are considering offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.

Considering an HVAC School near Erie KS?

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

Erie, Kansas

Erie is a city in and the county seat of Neosho County, Kansas, United States,[7] and situated in the valley of the Neosho River, about a mile Northeast of the river. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 1,150.[8]

A settlement named "Erie", later referred to as "Old Erie" and "Beantown USA", was platted 2 miles (3.2 km) northwest of the present townsite, while another community, known as Crawfordsville, was started two miles northeast of the current site. In 1866, the proprietors of these two towns made a compromise to abandon the towns and combine with the settlement at the present Erie site. Four men gave 40 acres each, that butted together, out of their 160-acre shares, to create the city plat of Erie. These men were: David W. Bray, Luther Puckett, John F. Himmelwright and Peter Walter.[9] In November of that year the Erie Town Company was formed. Each member of this company donated forty acres of land in the center of Section 32, Township 28, Range 20 east.[10] Each member was to buy city plots and improve them.[11]

Erie's first fire company was established in November 1866; its charter members were those men who had donated the land on which the community was built. The first log home in Erie was built in 1866, while the first businesses were built in the following year. By 1883, the city had two general stores, two blacksmith shops, one drug store, two hotels, one newspaper office, two churches, and a population of about 300.[10]

Heating and Air School Erie KS

Selecting the ideal HVAC school course is an important beginning toward a fulfilling career in the heating and air conditioning trade. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Heating and Air School. However, as we have discussed in this post, you should pick an Heating and Cooling school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC trade. Other factors to look for are lots of hands-on training and modern facilities. You should go to each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to tour the campus and talk with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling choices and if evening or weekend classes are offered if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options also. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have detailed 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 appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC contractor in Erie KS.

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