HVAC Training School Harlan KY

How to Find the Right HVAC Certification Training near Harlan Kentucky

air conditioner condensers in Harlan KYOnce you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioner professional, the next action is to choose an HVAC technical school near Harlan KY. But with so many to pick from, how do you select the right one to get the training that you require? Many potential students will make their decision based solely on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their home. Even though these are relevant considerations, they are not the only ones to evaluate. Just some of the other factors 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. These and additional criteria will be addressed in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to select an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c specialist does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Professional

Harlan KY HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the industry 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 professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, however every state and local municipality has its own requirements. Acquiring professional certification is not compulsory, but an alternative way for Harlan KY HVAC technicians to demonstrate that they are highly proficient and accomplished in their area of specialization. There are multiple acknowledged certifications within the industry that are offered. Following are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is attained by passing a proficiency exam and may be earned in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of field experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have three years of experience along with a passing score on the professional level exam. As with NATE, certifications are made available in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for techs that handle refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing could be required in your location, and you may also desire to obtain certification, it’s imperative that you pick an HVAC trade school that will prepare you for both. And since you will most likely be working with refrigerants, make certain that the school you pick readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Schools

radiator heater in Harlan KY homeThere are a variety of options available for HVAC training in a technical or vocational school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Obtaining a certificate will take the lesser amount of time, usually achieved in as little as 6 months, however some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for most HVAC positions, especially 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 deliver more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief explanation of each option offered near Harlan KY.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among beginning residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They provide a strong foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Usually requiring 2 years to complete, some degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is geared more towards a career in management or even business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a conventional four year program. In addition to learning how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Selecting the appropriate credential program will be based on what your future career objectives are, in addition to the time and money that you have to commit. One approach is to begin with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the trade in Harlan KY, later returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Online Classes

Harlan KY student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one approach in getting your training and earning a certificate or degree. Most schools will require some attendance on campus to complete practical training. A number also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or instead of practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be participated in on the web, this approach may be a more practical solution for many Harlan KY students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other traditional alternatives. Even commuting expenses from Harlan and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family obligations have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it more convenient to fit school into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Certification Courses

Questions to ask Harlan KY HVAC training schoolsOnce you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you would like to acquire, either online or on campus, you can start to decrease your list of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Harlan KY area and across the Country to choose from. That’s why it is imperative to have a checklist of important qualifiers when making school evaluations. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will most likely be the first 2 factors you will take into consideration. Following are some additional ones that you will want to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC trade schools in the Harlan KY area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as HVAC technology. Make certain that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it can help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited schools. Additionally, many states require that the HVAC training program be accredited for it 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 program. A low completion rate could indicate that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It may also signify that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of Harlan KY HVAC employers to assist graduates obtain apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Most HVAC technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with local Harlan KY HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained 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 specialist you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Harlan KY HVAC contractor if they can provide some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Harlan KY residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be increased tuition charges 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 monitor a couple of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to several of the students and get their opinions concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Harlan KY, check that the programs you are considering offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.

Considering an HVAC School near Harlan KY?

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

Harlan, Kentucky

Harlan was first settled by Samuel and Chloe Howard in 1796. Upon the founding of Harlan County (named for Kentucky pioneer Silas Harlan) in 1819, the Howards donated 12 acres (49,000 m2) of land to serve as the county seat.[4] The community there was already known as "Mount Pleasant", apparently owing to a nearby Indian mound. A post office was established on September 19, 1828, but called "Harlan Court House" due to another Mt. Pleasant preempting that name.[5] During the Civil War, Confederate raiders under Gen. Humphrey Marshall occupied the town; the local postmaster renamed the community "Spurlock" after himself;[5] and, in October 1863, the courthouse was burnt down in reprisal for the Union destruction of the courthouse in Lee County, Virginia.[4] In 1865, the post office was renamed "Harlan" and, although the community was formally incorporated by the state assembly as "Mount Pleasant" on April 15, 1884,[6] the town was already usually called "Harlan Court House" or "Harlan Town" by its inhabitants.[5] The city's terms of incorporation were amended to change the name to "Harlan" on March 13, 1912. One year before, the Louisville and Nashville Railroad had arrived in Harlan and prompted massive growth. The city had initially expanded east along the Clover Fork; after World War II, it also expanded south along Martin's Fork.[4]

A flood in 1977 prompted federal aid that diverted the Clover Fork into man-made tunnels under Ivy Hill in 1989.[4] In the 1990s, a flood wall was completed on the city's west side along the four-lane bypass U.S. Route 421.

Harlan is located in west-central Harlan County at 36°50′29″N 83°19′12″W / 36.84139°N 83.32000°W / 36.84139; -83.32000 (36.841487, -83.320066),[8] at the junction of the Clover Fork and Martin's Fork rivers. The Clover Fork continues north 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to join the Poor Fork, forming the Cumberland River, a major tributary of the Ohio River. Harlan is in a narrow mountain valley, constrained to the north by the western end of Black Mountain, to the south by Little Black Mountain, and to the west by Ewing Spur. The elevation at the Harlan Courthouse is 1,197 feet (365 m) above sea level, while the surrounding ridges rise outside the city limits to 2,100 feet (640 m) (Black Mountain), 3,000 feet (910 m) (Little Black Mountain), and 2,300 feet (700 m) (Ewing Spur).

HVAC Training School Harlan KY

Enrolling in the ideal HVAC school program is a crucial first step toward a fulfilling career in the heating & cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding HVAC Training School. However, as we have addressed in this article, you need to pick an HVAC school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC community. Other factors to search for are ample practical training and state-of-the-art facilities. You need to visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and talk with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the training and the interaction between them. In addition, ask about scheduling options and if night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options as well. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have detailed in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down 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 technician in Harlan KY.

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