Heating and Cooling Courses Meade KS

How to Enroll In the Right HVAC Training Program near Meade Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Meade KSOnce you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning specialist, the next action is to choose an HVAC vocational school near Meade KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you pick the right one to obtain the training that you need? Many future students will make their choice based entirely on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. While these are relevant considerations, they are not the only ones to take into account. A few of the other things that you need to research 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 in this article. But before we examine how to choose an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and cooling technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Technician

Meade KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically mandated to be licensed, though each state and local municipality has its own requirements. Attaining professional certification is not compulsory, but an alternative means for Meade KS HVAC specialists to demonstrate that they are highly skilled and experienced in their area of expertise. There are a number of acknowledged certifications within the industry that are offered. Following are a few of the significant ones.

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

Since licensing could be required in your area, and you may also desire to obtain 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 dealing with refrigerants, make sure that the program you select prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Certificate and Degree Training Programs

radiator heater in Meade KS homeThere are a number of alternatives available for HVAC instruction in a technical or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the least amount of time, often completed in as little as six months, though some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for most HVAC positions, particularly 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 extensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short summary of each credential offered near Meade KS.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC professionals. They provide a solid foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more exhaustive knowledge of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Generally requiring 2 years to complete, some 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 call for an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional 4 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 long term career objectives are, in addition to the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One approach is to begin with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the trade in Meade KS, subsequently returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, be sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Courses Online

Meade KS student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC program online is one approach in obtaining your education and receiving a degree or certificate. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to take part in hands on training. Many also sponsor 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 option may be a more practical solution for many Meade KS students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even driving expenses from Meade and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it more convenient to accommodate school into your hectic schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Classes

Questions to ask Meade KS HVAC training schoolsAs soon as you have selected the type of certificate or degree that you would like to earn, either on campus or online, you can start to narrow down your list of schools. As you are probably aware, there are many HVAC technical schools in the Meade KS area and across the United States to pick from. That’s why it is essential to have a list of relevant qualifications when making school evaluations. As formerly mentioned in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will most likely be the first 2 factors you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you need to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC technical schools in the Meade KS area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Verify that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you acquire an excellent education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, a number of states mandate that the HVAC training program be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate might indicate that students were disappointed with the program and quit. It could also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of alumni, which may mean more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of Meade KS HVAC employers to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Numerous HVAC vocational programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have referring partnerships with local Meade KS HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also furnishes employment 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 trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC specialist you are working with concerning what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Meade KS HVAC contracting company if they can provide some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Meade KS residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there may be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you receive as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some 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 comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to a few of the teachers and find out 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 assessing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Meade KS, verify that the programs you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family responsibilities.

Considering an HVAC School near Meade KS?

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

Meade, Kansas

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 1,721 people, 670 households, and 454 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,738.4 inhabitants per square mile (671.2/km2). There were 766 housing units at an average density of 773.7 per square mile (298.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.4% White, 1.0% African American, 0.6% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 1.1% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.1% of the population.

There were 670 households of which 32.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.5% were married couples living together, 8.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 32.2% were non-families. 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.98.

The median age in the city was 41.3 years. 26.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.4% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21.2% were from 25 to 44; 24.6% were from 45 to 64; and 21.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 50.6% male and 49.4% female.

Heating and Cooling Courses Meade KS

Picking the right HVAC training program is a crucial 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 Cooling Courses. However, as we have covered in this article, you should choose an HVAC trade school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC community. Other features to look for are sufficient hands-on 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. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling options and whether or not 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 proper questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter 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 Meade KS.

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