HVAC Schools Near Me in Ashland KS 67831

How to Choose an HVAC Training Class near Ashland Kansas

Ashland KS HVAC tech servicing AC compressorNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and cooling professional, the next step is to find an HVAC vocational school near Ashland KS. But with so many to pick from, how do you decide on the right one to receive the training that you require? A number of potential students will make their choice based exclusively on the cost of tuition or how close the school is to their home. While these are necessary factors to consider, they are not the only ones to investigate. Just some of the other details 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. These and additional criteria will be discussed in more detail later within this article. But before we explore how to choose an HVAC trade school, let’s look at what a heating and cooling specialist does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Technician in Ashland KS

Ashland KS HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is commonly used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC techs specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are typically required to be licensed, however every state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Attaining professional certification is not required, but an optional means for Ashland KS HVAC techs to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and knowledgeable in their area of expertise. There are a number of respected certifications within the industry that are offered. Following are a few of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized 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 makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of professional experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are needed 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. As with NATE, certifications are provided in various specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for specialists that work with refrigerants. There are three types of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing could be mandated in your area, and you may also intend to earn certification, it’s important that you enroll in an HVAC vocational school that will train you for both. And since you will more than likely be handling refrigerants, make sure that the school you pick readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Certificate and Degree Schools

Ashland KS HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are several choices offered for HVAC training in a trade or technical school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the least amount of time, typically achieved in just 6 months, however some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree training programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will furnish more extensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief description of each credential offered near Ashland KS.

  • Certificate. Usually requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They furnish a solid foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more detailed background of heating and cooling systems than the certificate program. Usually requiring two years to finish, a number of 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 require an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional four year program. In addition to being taught how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.

Choosing the right credential program will be dependent on what your long term career goals are, together with the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One option is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the field in Ashland KS, eventually returning to obtain 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 Online Classes

attending HVAC Training School Online in Ashland KSAttending an HVAC school online is one option to attaining your education and earning a certificate or degree. Almost all schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete practical training. A number also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes may be participated in on the web, this approach may be a more convenient solution for many Ashland KS students that are pressed for time. And a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other traditional options. Even commuting expenses from Ashland and study materials may be reduced, helping to make schooling more economical. And a large number of online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family responsibilities have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it easier to accommodate school into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Training Programs near Ashland KS

Once you have selected the type of degree or certificate that you desire to earn, either online or on campus, you can begin to narrow down your list of schools. As you are probably aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Ashland KS area and all over the United States to pick from. That’s why it is imperative to have a checklist of important qualifications when making school comparisons. As earlier mentioned in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the initial two variables you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you will want to investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Many HVAC vocational programs in the Ashland KS area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Make sure that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping make certain that you acquire a superior education, it can assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited schools. Additionally, many states mandate that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.

High Completion Rates.  Ask the Heating and Air Conditioning schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate may suggest that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It might also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of graduates, which can produce more contacts for the school to use 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 industry, but also that it has the network of Ashland KS HVAC employers to help graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Many HVAC vocational programs are taught along 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 companies or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with local Ashland KS HVAC contractors. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by supplying practical training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC tech you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Ashland KS HVAC contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school must be within commuting distance of your Ashland KS home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you receive as much one-on-one training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with some of the instructors 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 programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Ashland KS, check that the programs you are comparing offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Additionally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.

Attending HVAC School near Ashland KS?

Ashland, Kansas

Ashland lies along what was once a military road from Fort Dodge (now Dodge City, Kansas) to the north and Fort Supply in the Indian Territory to the south. In 1870, during the Comanche Campaign against the Native Americans, the Army built two redoubts along the Dodge/Supply trail near the current site of Ashland: the Bear Creek Redoubt, five miles to the north,[9] and the Cimarron Redoubt, nine miles to the south.[10]

In 2000, the median income for a household in the city was $32,721, and the median income for a family was $40,682. Males had a median income of $25,000 versus $20,313 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,183. About 9.5% of families and 11.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.3% of those under age 18 and 7.9% of those age 65 or over.

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 867 people, 381 households, and 239 families residing in the city. The population density was 516.1 inhabitants per square mile (199.3/km2). There were 465 housing units at an average density of 276.8 per square mile (106.9/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 92.7% White, 0.9% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 2.3% from other races, and 3.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.8% of the population.

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Enroll in the Right HVAC Certification Training near Ashland KS

Picking the right HVAC training course is a crucial first step toward a fulfilling career in the heating & cooling field. As we have discussed in this article, you should select a school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC field. Other features to search for are plenty of practical training and modern facilities. You should go to each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling choices and whether night or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options also. If you ask the proper questions as we have outlined in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to narrow down your choices so that you can make an educated decision. With the right training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC contractor in Ashland KS.

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