How to Find the Right HVAC Training Class near Syracuse Kansas
Once you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and cooling technician, the next step is to choose an HVAC technical school near Syracuse KS. But with so many to choose from, how do you select the right one to get the training that you need? Many future students will make their selection based solely on the cost of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. Although these are significant concerns, they are not the only ones to investigate. Some of the other things that you need to look into are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and additional criteria will be addressed in more detail later in this article. But before we discuss how to select an HVAC technical school, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed qualified tradesman.
Becoming an HVAC Technician in Syracuse KS
HVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians provide services for the installation, maintenance and repair of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically mandated to be licensed, although every state and local municipality has its own requirements. Obtaining professional certification is not compulsory, but an alternative way for Syracuse KS HVAC technicians to prove that they are highly qualified and experienced in their area of specialization. There are a number of respected certifications within the industry that are available. Here are some of the significant ones.
- North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a competency exam and may be earned in one or more specialties.
- HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of field experience together with passing a comprehensive exam are required for the professional level certification. Master specialists must have three years of experience along with a passing score on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are offered in several specialties.
- EPA Section 608. This certification is required for specialists that handle refrigerants. There are 3 forms of certification offered, one for small appliances, and the additional two for low and high pressure refrigerants.
Considering that licensing may be mandated in your location, and you may also desire to obtain certification, it’s important that you choose an HVAC trade school that will prepare you for both. And since you will more than likely be working with refrigerants, make sure that the school you decide on prepares you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.
HVAC Degree and Certificate Courses
There are a number of options available 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 minimum period of time, typically accomplished in as little as six months, although some courses are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification related to the position. The degree programs might provide a competitive advantage for securing employment and will provide more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief description of each option offered near Syracuse KS.
- Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level commercial or residential HVAC professionals. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
- Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more extensive understanding of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically taking 2 years to finish, some degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is suited 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 cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.
Selecting the right credential program will be based on what your future career goals are, in addition to the time and financial resources that you have to commit. One option is to start with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the trade in Syracuse KS, subsequently going back to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, be sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.
HVAC Online Courses
Choosing an HVAC program online is one alternative in obtaining your training and earning a certificate or degree. Almost all 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 rest of the classes can be attended on the web, this alternative may be a more convenient solution for many Syracuse KS students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are more economical than other traditional options. Even travelling expenses from Syracuse and study supplies can be minimized, helping to make schooling more affordable. And a large number of online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family responsibilities have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it less complicated to accommodate school into your busy lifestyle.
Questions For HVAC Certification Classes near Syracuse KS
After you have decided on the type of degree or certificate that you desire to obtain, either on campus or online, you can start to narrow down your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of HVAC vocational schools in the Syracuse KS area and all over the Country to select from. That’s why it is essential to have a list of key qualifiers when making school assessments. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will most likely be the initial 2 variables you will consider. Following are several additional ones that you will want to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accreditation. Numerous HVAC technical programs in the Syracuse KS area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for example HVAC technology. Make sure that the program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping make certain that you get a superior education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Additionally, a number of states require that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.
High Completion Rates. Ask the Heating and Air Conditioning schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate could suggest that students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. It may also suggest that the teachers were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of graduates, which may result in more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Syracuse KS HVAC employers to assist graduates obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most HVAC vocational programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC businesses or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have working relationships with local Syracuse KS HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by supplying 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 campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Syracuse KS HVAC contractor if they can give you some pointers. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Syracuse KS residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important 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 see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Speak with a few of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with some of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Syracuse KS, 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 offers part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Attending HVAC School near Syracuse KS?
Syracuse is located at 37°58′59″N 101°45′04″W / 37.982938°N 101.751224°W / 37.982938; -101.751224 (37.982938, -101.751224), along U.S. Route 50 and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, sixteen miles (twenty-six kilometers) from the Colorado border. The Arkansas River runs just south of the City of Syracuse. The countryside south of the Arkansas River is marked by sandhills. Located within these sandhills is the "Syracuse Sand Dunes," a city park covering 1,300 acres (5.3 km2), including a 40-acre (160,000 m2) fishing pond.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,812 people, 715 households, and 460 families residing in the city. The population density was 442.0 inhabitants per square mile (170.7/km2). There were 832 housing units at an average density of 202.9 per square mile (78.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 76.7% White, 0.2% African American, 1.8% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 19.4% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 32.7% of the population.
There were 715 households of which 37.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.7% were non-families. 31.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.23.
Select the Right HVAC Training Classes near Syracuse KS
Picking the right HVAC training program is an important first step toward a rewarding career in the heating & cooling trade. As we have addressed in this article, you need to choose a technical school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC community. Other factors to look for are ample hands-on training and modern facilities. You should check out each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to explore the campus and talk with both the faculty and current students. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. In addition, inquire about scheduling options and whether evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the right questions as we have detailed in our checklist for assessing schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC technician in Syracuse KS.
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