Trade School HVAC Lebanon KS

How to Pick the Right Heating and Cooling College near Lebanon Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Lebanon KSOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning specialist, the next action is to choose an HVAC technical school near Lebanon KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you pick the right one to get the training that you require? Some potential students will make their choice based solely on the cost of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. Even though these are necessary concerns, they are not the only ones to evaluate. Some of the other things 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. Those and additional criteria will be discussed 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.

Becoming an HVAC Specialist

Lebanon 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 professionals specialize in the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically required to be licensed, however each state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Attaining professional certification is not required, but a voluntary way for Lebanon KS HVAC techs to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and knowledgeable in their area of specialization. There are multiple recognized certifications within the field that are offered. Following are a few of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a competency examination and may be earned in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of field experience in addition to passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have 3 years of experience in addition to a passing result on the professional level exam. As with NATE, certifications are made available in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for techs that work with refrigerants. There are three forms of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing could be required in your location, and you may also intend to acquire certification, it’s essential that you enroll in an HVAC vocational school that will train you for both. And since you will more than likely be working with refrigerants, make sure that the program you choose readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Classes

radiator heater in Lebanon 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. Acquiring a certificate will take the minimum amount of time, typically completed in as little as 6 months, although some programs are longer. A certificate will qualify you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree training programs can provide a competitive edge in the job market and will deliver more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief explanation of each credential offered near Lebanon KS.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning commercial or residential HVAC technicians. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more detailed knowledge of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically taking 2 years to complete, some degrees include 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 mastering how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Choosing the appropriate credential program will be based on what your future career objectives are, along with the time and money that you have to commit. One possibility is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Lebanon KS, later returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Training Online

Lebanon KS student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one possibility to obtaining your training and receiving a certificate or degree. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to participate in hands on training. A number also provide 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 on the web, this option may be a more practical solution for many Lebanon KS students that are pressed for time. And a number of online degree programs are more economical than other on campus alternatives. Even commuting expenses from Lebanon and study materials may be lessened, helping to make schooling more affordable. And many online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family commitments have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it easier to accommodate school into your busy schedule.

Questions For HVAC Schools

Questions to ask Lebanon KS HVAC training schoolsOnce you have picked the type of certificate or degree that you want to obtain, either online or on campus, you can begin to limit your list of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Lebanon KS area and across the Country to choose from. That’s why it is essential to have a list of important qualifications when making school assessments. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the initial 2 factors you will take into consideration. Following are some additional ones that you need to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC technical schools in the Lebanon KS area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may acquire Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for example HVAC technology. Confirm that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of states require that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate could suggest that students were unhappy with the course and dropped out. It might also mean that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have high 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 employ 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 Lebanon KS HVAC employers to assist students secure apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Most HVAC technical programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of HVAC contractors or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have working partnerships with local Lebanon KS HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Confirm that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art 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 with regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Lebanon KS HVAC contracting company if they can provide some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you can move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Lebanon KS home. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there can be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to a few of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to some of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to attend classes at night or on weekends near Lebanon KS, confirm that the schools you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Lebanon KS?

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

Lebanon, Kansas

In 1918, a scientific survey established the geographic center of the 48 contiguous US states about 2.6 miles (4.2 km) northwest of Lebanon, and a monument was subsequently erected at the site.[8] The geographic center of all 50 of the US states is located near Belle Fourche, South Dakota.

Lebanon is located at 39°48′38″N 98°33′22″W / 39.81056°N 98.55611°W / 39.81056; -98.55611 (39.810492, -98.556061).[10] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.316 square miles (0.818 km2), all land.[2]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 218 people, 118 households, and 60 families residing in the city. The population density was 681.3 inhabitants per square mile (263.1/km2). There were 183 housing units at an average density of 571.9 per square mile (220.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.9% White, 0.5% Native American, 0.5% Asian, and 3.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.2% of the population.

Trade School HVAC Lebanon KS

Choosing the right HVAC school course is an important beginning toward a fulfilling career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Trade School HVAC. However, as we have discussed in this article, you need to select an HVAC vocational school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC profession. Other things to look for are sufficient hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You need to go to each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to tour the campus and speak 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 evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial assistance and student loan options also. If you ask the right questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and commitment, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC professional in Lebanon KS.

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