Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Courses Hays KS

How to Find the Right Heating and Cooling Training Program near Hays Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Hays KSNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning technician, the next action is to look for an HVAC vocational school near Hays KS. But with so many to select from, how do you pick the best one to get the training that you need? Many future students will make their choice based exclusively on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their home. Although these are important considerations, they are not the only ones to evaluate. 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. Those and other criteria will be covered in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to choose an HVAC vocational school, let’s take a look at what a heating and cooling specialist does to become a licensed professional tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Specialist

Hays KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are generally mandated to be licensed, although each state and local municipality has its own criteria. Attaining professional certification is not mandatory, but an alternative way for Hays KS HVAC technicians to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and knowledgeable in their area of expertise. There are several acknowledged certifications within the industry that are offered. Following are some of the important ones.

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

Because licensing could be required in your location, and you may also desire to earn certification, it’s imperative that you choose an HVAC trade school that will prepare you for both. And since you will more than likely be handling refrigerants, make sure that the school you choose readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Training Programs

radiator heater in Hays KS homeThere are a number of alternatives offered for HVAC instruction in a technical or trade school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the lesser amount of time, typically completed in just 6 months, though some courses are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will provide more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short description of each credential offered near Hays KS.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC professionals. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more detailed knowledge of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Generally taking 2 years to finish, a number of degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited more towards a career in management as well as 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 learn how to design them.

Picking the right credential program will be based on what your future career aspirations are, together with the time and financial resources 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 trade in Hays KS, subsequently going back to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make certain to ask the HVAC technician school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Courses Online

Hays KS student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one approach to getting your training and receiving a degree or certificate. Nearly all schools will require some attendance on campus to complete practical training. A number also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes can be attended on the web, this alternative may be a more accessible solution for some Hays KS students that are pressed for time. And a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even commuting expenses from Hays and study supplies may be reduced, helping to make schooling more economical. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family commitments have left you with little time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it easier to accommodate school into your busy lifestyle.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Courses

Questions to ask Hays KS HVAC training schoolsAfter you have picked the type of certificate or degree that you would like to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to decrease your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of HVAC vocational schools in the Hays KS area and throughout the United States to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a checklist of important qualifiers when making school evaluations. As formerly stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will most likely be the initial 2 factors you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you need to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC vocational programs in the Hays KS area have acquired 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 a specific program, for instance HVAC technology. Make certain that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, many states mandate that the HVAC training program be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate could signify that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It may also signify that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which may mean more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Hays KS HVAC employers to help students secure apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Many HVAC technical programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC companies or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with local Hays KS HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make certain that the school facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are currently 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 Hays KS HVAC contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Hays KS residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in 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 important that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk with several of the students and get their feedback relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to a few of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Hays KS, check that the schools you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family emergencies.

Considering an HVAC School near Hays KS?

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

Hays, Kansas

Hays is a city in and the county seat of Ellis County, Kansas, United States.[5] The largest city in northwestern Kansas, it is the economic and cultural center of the region.[6][7] It is also a college town, home to Fort Hays State University.[8] As of the 2010 census, the city population was 20,510.[9]

Prior to American settlement of the area, the site of Hays was located near where the territories of the Arapaho, Kiowa, and Pawnee met.[10] Claimed first by France as part of Louisiana and later acquired by the United States with the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, it lay within the area organized by the U.S. as Kansas Territory in 1854.[11][12] Kansas became a state in 1861, and the state government delineated the surrounding area as Ellis County in 1867.[11][13]

In 1865, the U.S. Army established Fort Fletcher southeast of present-day Hays to protect stagecoaches traveling the Smoky Hill Trail. A year later, the Army renamed the post Fort Hays in honor of the late Brig. Gen. Alexander Hays.[14] In late 1866, anticipating the construction of the Kansas Pacific Railway as far west as Fort Hays, a party from St. Louis, Missouri led by William Webb selected three sections of land for colonization near the fort.[15] In June 1867, to better serve the railroad, the Army relocated Fort Hays 15 miles northwest to a site near where the railroad was to cross Big Creek, a tributary of the Smoky Hill River. Seeing a business opportunity, Buffalo Bill Cody and railroad contractor William Rose founded the settlement of Rome, Kansas near the fort's new location. Within a month, the population of Rome grew to over 2,000. Webb, meanwhile, established the Big Creek Land Company and then surveyed and platted a town site, which he named Hays City after the fort, roughly one mile east of Rome. The railroad reached Hays City soon thereafter and constructed a depot there. The railroad's arrival, combined with a cholera epidemic that hit Rome in the late summer of 1867, drove Rome businesses and residents to relocate to Hays City. Within a year, Rome was completely abandoned.[16][17] As the western terminus of the railway, Hays City grew rapidly, serving as the supply point for territories to the west and southwest.[15][18]

Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Courses Hays KS

Choosing the right HVAC school program is a crucial beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Courses. However, as we have addressed in this article, you need to choose an HVAC trade school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC trade. Other things to search for are sufficient practical training and modern facilities. You should 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. Try to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. Also, ask about scheduling options and if evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial assistance 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 filter your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC technician in Hays KS.

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    Werth Heating Plumbing & Air Conditioning
    1 Reviews
    Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning/HVAC
    Phone:
    516 E 8th St, Hays, KS 67601

    Auman Company
    2 Reviews
    Plumbing
    Phone:
    311 E 11th St, Hays, KS 67601