HVAC Night School Hickman KY

How to Find the Right HVAC Certificate Program near Hickman Kentucky

air conditioner condensers in Hickman KYOnce you have made a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning specialist, the next action is to look for an HVAC technical school near Hickman KY. But with so many to choose from, how do you select the best one to get the training that you need? Some prospective students will make their decision based exclusively on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their home. Although these are significant factors to consider, they are not the only ones to take into account. 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 benchmarks will be addressed in more detail later in this article. But before we examine how to choose an HVAC technical school, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c technician does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Tech

Hickman KY HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians specialize in the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, though each state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Earning professional certification is not required, but an alternative way for Hickman KY HVAC technicians to prove that they are highly skilled and experienced in their area of specialization. There are multiple respected certifications within the field that are available. Here are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is attained by passing a proficiency exam and may be received in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of professional experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have 3 years of experience in addition to a passing score on the professional level examination. As with NATE, certifications are offered in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for techs that handle refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing may be required in your area, and you may also intend to earn certification, it’s essential that you pick an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will most likely be dealing with refrigerants, make sure that the program you decide on prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree Schools

radiator heater in Hickman KY homeThere are a variety of options offered for HVAC training in a technical or vocational school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the lesser period of time, typically achieved in as little as six months, although some courses are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree training programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will deliver more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief summary of each credential offered near Hickman KY.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC specialists. They provide a solid foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive knowledge of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically requiring two 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 being taught how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Picking the right credential program will be dependent on what your long term career objectives are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to commit. One approach is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the trade in Hickman KY, subsequently going back to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Schools Online

Hickman KY student attending HVAC school onlineAttending an HVAC school online is one possibility to attaining your training and earning a certificate or degree. Most schools will call for 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 may be participated in via the internet, this option may be a more accessible solution for some Hickman KY students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even driving expenses from Hickman and study supplies can be reduced, helping to make education more budget-friendly. And a large number of online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family responsibilities have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it easier to accommodate school into your hectic lifestyle.

Questions For HVAC Schools

Questions to ask Hickman KY HVAC training schoolsOnce you have picked the type of certificate or degree that you want to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Hickman KY area and all over the USA to pick from. That’s why it is very important to have a checklist of relevant qualifications when making school evaluations. As formerly mentioned in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will undoubtedly be the first two aspects you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you should explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC trade schools in the Hickman KY area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for instance HVAC technology. Make sure that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping make certain that you acquire 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 in order to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the HVAC schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate might signify that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. 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 directory of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Hickman KY HVAC employers to help grads secure apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Many HVAC technical programs are taught in conjunction with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling companies or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with local Hickman KY HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides job 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 trained on are up-to-date and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Hickman KY HVAC contracting company if they can provide some suggestions. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Hickman KY home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there might be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s desirable that you get as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger 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. Speak to a few of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to a few of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Hickman KY, verify that the programs you are comparing provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be 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 emergencies.

Considering an HVAC School near Hickman KY?

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

Hickman, Kentucky

Hickman is a city in and the county seat of Fulton County, Kentucky, United States.[2] Located on the Mississippi River, the city had a population of 2,395 at the 2010 U.S. census and is classified as a home rule-class city.[3] Hickman is part of the Union City micropolitan area.

European-American settlement of this area did not begin until decades after the American Revolutionary War. James Mills built the first cabin on the site in 1819. The community of Mills Point was large enough to receive a post office in 1830. Around 1834, G. Marr purchased much of the surrounding area and laid out more streets.[4]

Two floods devastated Hickman, the first in 1912 and the second in 1913.[6] The flood of 1912 began when a levee located near Hickman broke. Within a few hours the water had risen to the roofs of houses. The flood of 1913 began when a levee near West Hickman broke on April 4. Baseball pitcher Rube Waddell was among the many who helped save the city during both floods. Waddell came down with pneumonia after each flood and subsequently died of tuberculosis.

HVAC Night School Hickman KY

Choosing the right HVAC school program is a crucial beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding HVAC Night School. However, as we have discussed in this post, you need to select an Heating and Cooling vocational school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC trade. Other factors to search for are plenty of practical training and modern facilities. You need to visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to tour 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. Additionally, ask about scheduling choices and whether evening or weekend classes are offered if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial assistance and student loan options as well. If you ask the right questions as we have laid out in our guidelines for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Hickman KY.

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