How to Select an HVAC Certification Course near Edison Georgia
Once you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and cooling technician, the next step is to find an HVAC trade school near Edison GA. But with so many to select from, how do you decide on the ideal one to receive the training that you need? Some future students will make their choice based exclusively on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their home. Although these are relevant considerations, they are not the only ones to evaluate. 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 other benchmarks will be addressed in more detail later within this article. But before we explore how to pick an HVAC training program, let’s look at what a heating and a/c specialist does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.
How to Become an HVAC Pro in Edison GA
HVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC techs provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are typically mandated to be licensed, although each state and local municipality has its own requirements. Obtaining professional certification is not mandatory, but an alternative means for Edison GA HVAC technicians to demonstrate that they are exceptionally qualified and experienced in their area of specialization. There are a number of acknowledged certifications within the field that are offered. Here are a few of the significant ones.
- North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC techs. The certification is earned by passing a competency examination and may be acquired in one or more specialties.
- HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of field experience as well as passing a comprehensive exam are required 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 provided 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 other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.
Considering that licensing might be required in your location, and you may also desire to earn certification, it’s important that you select an HVAC vocational school that will prepare you for both. And since you will probably be handling refrigerants, make sure that the program you decide on preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.
HVAC Degree and Certificate Training Programs
There are a number of options 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 period of time, usually accomplished in as little as 6 months, however some courses are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage for securing employment and will furnish more extensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief description of each option offered near Edison GA.
- Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level commercial or residential HVAC specialists. They provide a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the trade.
- Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more exhaustive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Usually taking 2 years to finish, many degrees incorporate an internship or work-study program.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited more towards 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 cooling systems, you will also learn how to design them.
Choosing the right credential program will be dependent on what your future career aspirations are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One option is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the field in Edison GA, eventually returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, be sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are considering about how their returning student program works.
HVAC Classes Online
Enrolling in an HVAC program online is one approach in getting your education and receiving a certificate or degree. Nearly all schools will call for some attendance on campus to participate in hands on training. A number also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes may be attended via the internet, this option may be a more convenient solution for some Edison GA students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even driving expenses from Edison and study materials can be minimized, helping to make schooling more affordable. And a large number of online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family obligations have left you with minimal time to attend classes, maybe an HVAC online training program will make it more convenient to accommodate school into your hectic lifestyle.
Questions For HVAC Training Programs near Edison GA
As soon as you have selected the type of certificate or degree that you desire to obtain, either on campus or online, you can begin to limit your list of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of HVAC trade schools in the Edison GA area and all over the Country to pick from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a checklist of key qualifiers when making school assessments. As formerly mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will probably be the first two variables you will take into consideration. Following are some additional ones that you will want to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accreditation. Numerous HVAC technical schools in the Edison GA area have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Confirm that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a superior education, it can help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of states require that the HVAC training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion Rates. Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate could indicate that students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. It could also suggest that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly essential that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of alumni, which can produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Edison GA HVAC employers to assist students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most HVAC vocational programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling contractors or labor unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with local Edison GA HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the area HVAC professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the HVAC tech you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Edison GA HVAC contractor if they can give you some suggestions. Also keep in mind that unless you are able to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Edison GA residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to several of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with 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 schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Edison GA, confirm that the programs you are comparing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Attending HVAC School near Edison GA?
Edison is a city in Calhoun County, Georgia, United States. The population was 1,531 at the 2010 census. The Edison Commercial Historic District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Edison is located in northwestern Calhoun County at 31°33′39″N 84°44′17″W / 31.56083°N 84.73806°W / 31.56083; -84.73806 (31.560891, -84.737984). It is 40 miles (64 km) west of Albany and 20 miles (32 km) east of the Alabama line at Fort Gaines.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,340 people, 512 households, and 334 families residing in the city. The population density was 575.9 people per square mile (222.1/km²). There were 584 housing units at an average density of 251.0 per square mile (96.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 31.94% White, 67.69% African American, and 0.37% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.27% of the population.
Enroll in the Right HVAC Certification Training near Edison GA
Finding the ideal HVAC training program is a critical beginning toward a rewarding career in the heating and cooling field. As we have covered in this article, you need to choose a school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC field. Other factors to look for are sufficient practical training and modern facilities. You should visit 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, inquire about scheduling options and whether or not evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And remember to ask about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the right questions as we have detailed in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC technician in Edison GA.
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