Heating and Refrigeration Courses Whitesburg KY

How to Choose the Right Heating and Cooling Certification Course near Whitesburg Kentucky

air conditioner condensers in Whitesburg KYNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and air conditioning technician, the next action is to find an HVAC trade school near Whitesburg KY. But with so many to select from, how do you pick the ideal one to receive the training that you require? A number of future students will make their choice based entirely on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Even though these are significant considerations, they are not the only ones to take into account. Just some of the other things that you need to investigate are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and other criteria will be discussed in more detail later in this article. But before we discuss how to choose an HVAC trade school, let’s look at what a heating and air conditioning professional does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Contractor

Whitesburg KY HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC professionals provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are generally required to be licensed, though every state and local municipality has its own prerequisites. Earning professional certification is not required, but an optional way for Whitesburg KY HVAC technicians to prove that they are exceptionally proficient and experienced in their area of expertise. There are a number of recognized certifications within the trade that are available. Here 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 can be acquired in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification offers both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of field experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have 3 years of experience as well as a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for techs that handle refrigerants. There are three types of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Considering that licensing could be mandated in your location, and you may also intend to acquire certification, it’s important that you enroll in an HVAC trade school that will train you for both. And since you will more than likely be dealing with refrigerants, make sure that the program you pick preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree Classes

radiator heater in Whitesburg KY homeThere are a variety of alternatives available for HVAC instruction 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 completed in just six months, though some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for the majority of 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 furnish more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short explanation of each option offered near Whitesburg KY.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC technicians. They furnish a solid foundation of skills for employment within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program provides a more extensive knowledge of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Normally taking two years to complete, some degrees include 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 four year program. In addition to learning how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Picking the ideal credential program will be based on what your future career aspirations are, along with the time and money that you have to invest. One approach is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the trade in Whitesburg KY, subsequently going back to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make certain to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Courses Online

Whitesburg KY student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC program online is one possibility to getting your training and receiving a certificate or degree. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to participate in hands on training. Some also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the balance of the classes can be participated in via the internet, this alternative may be a more accessible solution for many Whitesburg KY students that are short on time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other traditional choices. Even driving expenses from Whitesburg and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online schools 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 HVAC online training program will make it less complicated to fit school into your hectic schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Schools

Questions to ask Whitesburg KY HVAC training schoolsOnce you have chosen the type of certificate or degree that you desire to acquire, either online or on campus, you can start to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are many HVAC vocational schools in the Whitesburg KY area and throughout the USA to select from. That’s why it is very important 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 variables you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you need to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC trade schools in the Whitesburg KY area have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example HVAC technology. Make certain that the program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, some states mandate 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 percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A low completion rate could signify that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It may also indicate 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 more extensive list of graduates, 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 validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Whitesburg KY HVAC employers to help students acquire apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have working partnerships with local Whitesburg KY HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to form 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 in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Whitesburg KY HVAC contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Whitesburg KY home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may 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 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 students and instructors. Speak with several of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Make sure 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 in the evening or on weekends near Whitesburg KY, check that the schools you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Whitesburg KY?

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

Whitesburg, Kentucky

Whitesburg is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of Letcher County, Kentucky, United States.[2] The population was 2,139 at the 2010 census. It was named for C. White, a state politician.[3]

Whitesburg is home to Appalshop, a multi-disciplinary arts and education center founded in 1969 which produces original films, video, theater, music and spoken-word recordings, radio, photography, multimedia, and books. WMMT (FM) 88.7 (Mountain Community Radio), was founded by Appalshop in 1985.

Whitesburg's major newspaper is The Mountain Eagle. Founded by Nehemiah Webb in 1907, the weekly paper has been owned by the Gish family of Letcher County since 1956. The Eagle has won numerous awards for its coverage of strip mining and its environmental effects, education, and political corruption.[4]

Heating and Refrigeration Courses Whitesburg KY

Picking the ideal HVAC school program is a critical beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating and air conditioning field. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Heating and Refrigeration Courses. However, as we have discussed in this post, you should choose an HVAC school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC community. Other factors to look for are sufficient hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You should go to each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to explore the campus and talk with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling choices and whether evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options also. If you ask the proper questions as we have outlined in our checklist for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your options so that you can make an educated decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC contractor in Whitesburg KY.

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