HVAC Course Outline Pratt KS

How to Pick the Right Heating and Cooling Training Class near Pratt Kansas

air conditioner condensers in Pratt KSNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning professional, the next step is to find an HVAC vocational school near Pratt KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you pick the ideal one to receive the training that you require? Many potential students will make their decision based solely on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their home. While these are important considerations, they are not the only ones to take into account. Just 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. These and additional criteria will be covered in more detail later within this article. But before we examine how to select an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and air conditioning contractor does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Tech

Pratt KS HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals specialize in the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are generally required to be licensed, although every state and regional municipality has its own criteria. Earning professional certification is not required, but an optional way for Pratt KS HVAC techs to demonstrate that they are highly skilled and accomplished in their area of expertise. There are many acknowledged certifications within the trade that are available. Below are some 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 proficiency 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 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. As with NATE, certifications are provided in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are three forms of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing could be required in your area, and you may also desire to acquire certification, it’s important that you enroll in an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be dealing with refrigerants, make certain that the school you decide on readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Training Programs

radiator heater in Pratt KS homeThere are a number of alternatives offered for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the least amount of time, usually achieved in just 6 months, although some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree training programs can provide a competitive edge for securing employment and will provide more in-depth training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief summary of each credential offered near Pratt KS.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among beginning residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They provide a solid foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more comprehensive understanding of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Normally taking 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 call for an Associate Degree, while others are a standard 4 year program. In addition to learning how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Picking the ideal credential program will be based on what your long term career aspirations are, together with 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 getting some experience in the field in Pratt KS, later returning to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Training

Pratt KS student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one alternative to attaining your training and receiving a degree or certificate. Nearly all schools will require some attendance on campus to participate in practical training. A number also sponsor 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 convenient solution for some Pratt KS students that are pressed for time. And many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even driving expenses from Pratt and study materials can be minimized, helping to make schooling more budget-friendly. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family responsibilities have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it more convenient to accommodate school into your active schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Training Classes

Questions to ask Pratt KS HVAC training schoolsAs soon as you have chosen the type of degree or certificate that you want to obtain, either online or on campus, you can start to narrow down your list of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Pratt KS area and across the USA to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of important qualifications when making school evaluations. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the initial 2 factors you will take into consideration. Following are several additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC technical programs in the Pratt KS area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Confirm that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, it may assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, some states mandate that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A lower completion rate may suggest that students were unhappy with the course and quit. It may also signify that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, 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 validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Pratt KS HVAC employers to help grads secure apprenticeships or jobs.

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

Modern Facilities.  Make sure 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 technician you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Pratt KS HVAC contractor if they can give you some tips. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Pratt KS home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable 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 large they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to some of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Pratt KS, verify that the programs you are reviewing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family emergencies.

Considering an HVAC School near Pratt KS?

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

Pratt, Kansas

Pratt was founded in 1884[8] and named after Caleb S. Pratt, a young Civil War officer from the Kansas Infantry, who was killed in the Battle of Wilson's Creek near Springfield, Missouri[9] The first post office in Pratt was established in June 1884.[10]

In 1887, the Chicago, Kansas and Nebraska Railway built a main line from Herington to Pratt.[11] In 1888, this line was extended to Liberal. Later, it was extended to Tucumcari, New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. It foreclosed in 1891 and was taken over by Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway, which shut down in 1980 and reorganized as Oklahoma, Kansas and Texas Railroad, which merged in 1988 with Missouri Pacific Railroad. In 1997, Missouri Pacific merged with Union Pacific. Most locals still refer to this railroad as the "Rock Island".

Built in 1930, Hotel Roberts is the largest and most highly styled historic hotel in Pratt. Construction of the hotel was initiated by the Pratt Chamber of Commerce, which formed a committee in the late 1920s specifically to facilitate the construction of a large new hotel. Seen as a potentially valuable asset for the community, the hotel was financed in part through a public subscription campaign, and constructed on land provided by the Chamber. The Pratt Hotel Company owned and operated the hotel and hired Wichita architect Samuel S. Voigt and Kansas City contractor Webster L. Elson to design and build the building. Elson not only supervised the rapid construction of the "fire-proof" building, he was a founding member of the Pratt Hotel Company, and he retained an ownership interest in the property for many years. The community hospital was established on the eighth floor of the building in 1932, complete with an operating room and an x-ray machine. Architecturally, the building is significant as an early and sophisticated example of the Art Deco style in central Kansas. The hotel opened as the Hotel Roberts in 1930, and continued under that name until 1959, when it was purchased by Monte Parrish and renamed the Hotel Parrish. In January 2015 it was listed on the National and State Registers of Historic Places for its local significance in the areas of architecture and community planning and development.[12]

HVAC Course Outline Pratt KS

Enrolling in the right 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 HVAC Course Outline. However, as we have addressed in this post, you should pick an Heating and Cooling technical school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC field. Other things to look for are ample practical training and modern facilities. You should visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and talk with both the faculty and current students. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. In addition, ask about scheduling choices and whether or not evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the right questions as we have laid out in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an educated decision. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC specialist in Pratt KS.

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