How to Enroll In an HVAC Certification Course near Silver Grove Kentucky
Once you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioner specialist, the next step is to find an HVAC technical school near Silver Grove KY. But with so many to select from, how do you select the ideal one to obtain the training that you require? Some potential students will make their decision based exclusively on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their home. Although these are important factors to consider, they are not the only ones to take into account. A few 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 covered in more detail later within this article. But before we tackle how to select an HVAC technical school, let’s look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed professional tradesman.
Becoming an HVAC Professional in Silver Grove KY
HVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the industry that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are generally required to be licensed, although each state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Acquiring professional certification is not compulsory, but an alternative means for Silver Grove KY HVAC technicians to demonstrate that they are exceptionally proficient and experienced in their area of specialization. There are multiple respected certifications within the industry that are offered. Below are a few 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 competency exam 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 professional experience in addition to passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have 3 years of experience along with a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in various specialties.
- EPA Section 608. This certification is required for specialists that work with refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.
Because licensing may be required in your location, and you may also intend to obtain certification, it’s important that you choose 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 choose prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.
HVAC Certificate and Degree Schools
There are a variety of alternatives offered for HVAC training in a trade or technical school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Obtaining a certificate will take the minimum amount of time, often accomplished in as little as six months, however some courses are longer. A certificate will qualify you for the majority of HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will deliver more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief summary of each option offered near Silver Grove KY.
- Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among entry level residential or commercial HVAC specialists. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
- Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more detailed understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Normally requiring 2 years to finish, many degrees incorporate 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 being taught how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.
Selecting the ideal credential program will be based on what your long term career objectives are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to commit. One possibility is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the trade in Silver Grove KY, subsequently returning to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, be sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.
HVAC Online Training
Choosing an HVAC school online is one possibility in getting your education and receiving a degree or certificate. Nearly all schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete practical training. Many also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or instead of practical lab work. But since the balance of the classes can be attended online, this option may be a more practical solution for some Silver Grove KY students that are pressed for time. And a number of online degree programs are less costly than other traditional options. Even travelling expenses from Silver Grove and study materials can be lessened, 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 responsibilities have left you with minimal time to attend classes, maybe an HVAC online training program will make it easier to accommodate school into your hectic lifestyle.
Questions to Ask HVAC Training Classes near Silver Grove KY
Once you have selected the type of certificate or degree that you want to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to decrease your list of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of HVAC trade schools in the Silver Grove KY area and throughout the United States to select from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of relevant qualifiers when making school evaluations. As earlier mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will undoubtedly be the first 2 aspects you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accreditation. A large number of HVAC technical programs in the Silver Grove KY area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Verify that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, many states mandate that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.
High Completion Rates. Ask the Heating and Cooling 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 program. A low completion rate might signify that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It could also mean that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of alumni, which can mean more contacts for the school to employ 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 Silver Grove KY HVAC employers to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of HVAC training programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC companies or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with local Silver Grove KY HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the tools that you will be instructed 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, consult with the HVAC specialist you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Silver Grove KY HVAC company if they can provide some suggestions. Also keep in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school must be within commuting distance of your Silver Grove KY home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there may be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Speak to several of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Silver Grove KY, check that the schools you are reviewing offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Attending HVAC School near Silver Grove KY?
Silver Grove, Kentucky
Silver Grove is a railroad town founded in 1911 for the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway. In 1914, a newspaper described it as a modern town, because it boasted electric lights, an urban water and sewer system, a modernized fire department, a school, and a spacious park. In 1948, C&O wanted out of the city. In 1951, Gerald Losey was selected as the first mayor.
Silver Grove is located in northeastern Campbell County at 39°2′13″N 84°23′55″W / 39.03694°N 84.39861°W / 39.03694; -84.39861 (39.036902, −84.398652), on the south bank of the Ohio River.Kentucky Route 8 passes through the city, leading northwest (downstream) along the river 8 miles (13 km) to Dayton and southeast 32 miles (51 km) to Augusta. Downtown Cincinnati, Ohio, is 10 miles (16 km) to the northwest via Interstate 471.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Silver Grove has a total area of 1.7 square miles (4.3 km2), of which 1.1 square miles (2.9 km2) is land and 0.54 square miles (1.4 km2), or 31.61%, is water.
Select the Right HVAC Training Course near Silver Grove KY
Enrolling in the right HVAC training program is an important first step toward a gratifying career in the heating and air conditioning industry. As we have discussed in this post, you need to pick a vocational school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the HVAC community. Other features to look for are sufficient hands-on 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 speak with both the current students and faculty. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Also, ask about scheduling options and if night or weekend classes are available if needed. And remember to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have detailed in our checklist for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC contractor in Silver Grove KY.
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