How to Choose an HVAC School near Munfordville Kentucky
Now that you have made a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioner professional, the next action is to locate an HVAC trade school near Munfordville KY. But with so many to choose from, how do you select the right one to get the training that you need? Some future students will make their choice based exclusively on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Even though these are relevant factors to consider, they are not the only ones to investigate. Some of the other things that you need to research are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and additional benchmarks will be covered in more detail later within this article. But before we tackle how to choose an HVAC technical school, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed professional tradesman.
Becoming an HVAC Technician in Munfordville KY
HVAC is an acronym that is commonly used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC techs specialize in the installation, repair and maintenance of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are commonly mandated to be licensed, however every state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Obtaining professional certification is not required, but an optional way for Munfordville KY HVAC specialists to demonstrate that they are exceptionally skilled and knowledgeable in their area of expertise. There are a number of respected certifications within the field 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 achieved by passing a competency examination and can be received in one or more specialties.
- HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of professional experience in addition to 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 result on the professional level exam. Similar to NATE, certifications are offered in various specialties.
- EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for specialists that work with 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 might be required in your location, and you may also desire to obtain certification, it’s essential that you pick an HVAC vocational school that will train you for both. And since you will probably be handling refrigerants, make sure that the school you choose preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.
HVAC Degree Courses
There are several choices available for HVAC training in a vocational or trade school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Earning a certificate will take the minimum period of time, usually accomplished in as little as six months, though some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for the majority of HVAC positions, especially if you are licensed and have certification appropriate to the position. The degree programs can provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will furnish more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief summary of each option offered near Munfordville KY.
- Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among entry level commercial or residential HVAC specialists. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
- Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more exhaustive knowledge of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Typically taking 2 years to complete, some degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is geared more for a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a standard 4 year program. In addition to being taught how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.
Selecting the ideal credential program will be dependent on what your long term career objectives are, along with the time and money that you have to commit. One possibility is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the trade in Munfordville KY, later returning to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, make certain to ask the HVAC technician school you are considering about how their returning student program works.
HVAC Schools Online
Choosing an HVAC school online is one alternative to attaining your education and receiving a certificate or degree. Nearly all schools will require some attendance on campus to participate in practical training. Many also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the balance of the classes can be attended on the web, this option may be a more accessible solution for many Munfordville KY students that are pressed for time. And many online degree programs are more economical than other traditional choices. Even travelling expenses from Munfordville and study supplies may be minimized, helping to make schooling more affordable. And many online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family responsibilities have left you with limited time to attend classes, maybe an HVAC online training program will make it easier to fit school into your active lifestyle.
Questions For HVAC Training Programs near Munfordville KY
When you have selected the type of certificate or degree that you desire to obtain, either on campus or online, you can start to decrease your list of schools. As you are certainly aware, there are numerous HVAC trade schools in the Munfordville KY area and all over the United States to pick from. That’s why it is essential to have a checklist of key qualifiers when making school assessments. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will undoubtedly be the first 2 variables you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you will want to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accreditation. Many HVAC trade programs in the Munfordville KY area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for instance HVAC technology. Confirm that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you get an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, many states require that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion Rates. Ask the Heating and Cooling schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate may signify that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It might also mean that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which can result in more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Munfordville KY HVAC employers to assist students acquire apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most HVAC technical programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or labor unions. Check if the schools you are considering have referring partnerships with local Munfordville KY HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by furnishing practical training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local HVAC professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus 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, check with the HVAC tech you are working with concerning what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Munfordville KY HVAC contractor if they can provide some tips. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Munfordville KY home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there can be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Speak with several of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with a few of the instructors and learn what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Munfordville KY, verify that the programs you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Attending HVAC School near Munfordville KY?
The settlement was once known as "Big Buffalo Crossing". The current name came from Richard Jones Munford, who donated the land to establish the new county seat in 1816. Munfordville was incorporated in 1858.
Munfordville is located in central Hart County at 37°16′36″N 85°53′52″W / 37.27667°N 85.89778°W / 37.27667; -85.89778 (37.276608, -85.897822), on the north side of the Green River. U.S. Route 31W is Munfordville's Main Street, while Interstate 65 passes just northwest of town, with access from Exit 65. I-65 leads north 32 miles (51 km) to Elizabethtown and southwest 40 miles (64 km) to Bowling Green.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,563 people, 698 households, and 418 families residing in the city. The population density was 619.0 people per square mile (238.5/km²). There were 776 housing units at an average density of 307.3 per square mile (118.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 87.33% White, 11.45% Black or African American, 0.13% Asian, 0.13% from other races, and 0.96% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.09% of the population.
Enroll in the Right HVAC Trade School near Munfordville KY
Picking the ideal HVAC training course is a critical first step toward a fulfilling career in the heating and air conditioning field. As we have discussed in this article, you need to choose a trade school and a degree or certificate 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 check out each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. Additionally, ask about scheduling options and whether or not night or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to ask about financial aid and student loan options too. If you ask the proper questions as we have outlined in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC professional in Munfordville KY.
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