Heat and Air School Iola KS

How to Choose the Right Heating and Cooling Certification Training near Iola Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Iola KSOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning technician, the next step is to locate an HVAC vocational school near Iola KS. But with so many to select from, how do you decide on the right one to get the training that you need? A number of future students will make their selection based solely on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their home. Even though these are significant factors to consider, 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 additional benchmarks will be addressed in more detail later within this article. But before we discuss how to pick an HVAC vocational school, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning technician does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Tech

Iola KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is commonly used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are commonly mandated to be licensed, though each state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Earning professional certification is not required, but an alternative way for Iola KS HVAC technicians to establish that they are exceptionally skilled and experienced in their area of expertise. There are several respected certifications within the trade that are available. Following are a few of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency examination and may be earned in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience as well as a passing score on the professional level examination. Similar to NATE, certifications are made available in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are three types of certification available, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing could be required in your area, and you may also desire to earn certification, it’s important that you enroll in an HVAC trade school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be working with refrigerants, make sure that the program you select preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree Training Programs

radiator heater in Iola KS homeThere are several options available for HVAC instruction in a technical or trade school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the minimum period of time, typically achieved in as little as six months, although some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree programs might provide a competitive edge for securing employment and will deliver more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a short explanation of each option offered near Iola 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 employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive background of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Normally requiring 2 years to finish, many degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is tailored more towards a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a standard 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 appropriate credential program will be based on what your long term career objectives are, in addition to the time and money that you have to invest. One option is to begin with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the field in Iola KS, eventually returning to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Courses

Iola KS student attending HVAC school onlineAttending an HVAC program online is one possibility to getting your education and earning a certificate or degree. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to take part in hands on training. A number also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or instead of practical lab work. But since the balance of the classes can be participated in online, this approach may be a more accessible solution for some Iola KS students that are short on time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other traditional alternatives. Even commuting expenses from Iola and study supplies may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family obligations have left you with limited time to attend classes, maybe an online HVAC degree program will make it less complicated to fit school into your active lifestyle.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Courses

Questions to ask Iola KS HVAC training schoolsAfter you have chosen the type of degree or certificate that you desire to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to limit your list of schools. As you are probably aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Iola KS area and throughout the USA to select from. That’s why it is very important to have a list of important qualifiers when making school comparisons. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will undoubtedly be the initial two aspects you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you will want to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC technical schools in the Iola KS area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as HVAC technology. Verify that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, some states require that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate could indicate that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It may also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive 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 will not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of Iola KS HVAC employers to help graduates acquire apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC trade programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with local Iola KS HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm 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, check with the HVAC tech you are working with concerning what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Iola KS HVAC company if they can provide some tips. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Iola KS residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there can be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you receive as much one-on-one training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Speak with a few of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Iola KS, confirm that the schools you are reviewing provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

Considering an HVAC School near Iola KS?

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

Iola, Kansas

Iola (pronounced /aɪˈoʊlə/)[7] is a city situated along the Neosho River in the northwestern part of Allen County, in southeast Kansas, in the central United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 5,704.[8] Iola is the county seat of Allen County.[9] It is named in honor of Iola Colborn.[10]

The history of Iola began in 1859. After the location of the county seat at Humboldt, by the legislature of 1858, there was a great deal of dissatisfaction among the residents of the central and northern parts of the county, and a number of citizens selected the present site of Iola, with the intention of ultimately securing the county seat. On January 1, 1859, a large meeting was held at the Deer Creek schoolhouse. It was determined to organize a town company, which was immediately done, and a constitution was then adopted and officers elected. The officers of the company after due consideration of different points selected a site for the proposed town, about two miles (3 km) north of Cofachique, at the confluence of Elm Creek and the Neosho River. The site was owned in part by J.F. Colborn and W.H. Cochrane. The claims on two quarter-sections were bought, and were soon after surveyed into lots.

The town company worked to get the town started. A meeting was held to choose a name. Several were proposed, and the choice was determined by ballot. Some one had proposed the name Iola, which was the Christian name of J.F. Colborn's wife.[11] As a result of the vote, this name was chosen. Meetings of the company were held every week during the first year and efforts made to induce settlement. By the close of the year a number of lots had been disposed of, several buildings erected, and other improvements made, as all who bought lots were required to make some improvements at once. The residents of Cofachique, despairing of making their town a success, joined with Iola, and most of them moved to the new site, all working together in the endeavor to secure the location of the county seat at once.

Heat and Air School Iola KS

Choosing the ideal HVAC school program is an important beginning toward a rewarding career in the heating & cooling field. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Heat and Air School. However, as we have discussed in this post, you need to choose an HVAC training program and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC profession. Other things to look for are lots of hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You should go to each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to explore the campus and talk with both the current students and faculty. 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 available if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial assistance 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 educated decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and commitment, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Iola KS.

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