HVAC Schools Near Me in Lafayette TN 37083

How to Select an HVAC School near Lafayette Tennessee

Lafayette TN HVAC tech servicing AC compressorNow that you have decided on a career as a heating and cooling technician, the next action is to locate an HVAC vocational school near Lafayette TN. But with so many to select from, how do you select the best one to receive the training that you require? Some future students will make their choice based solely on the price of tuition or how near the school is to their home. While these are significant considerations, they are not the only ones to evaluate. Some of the other details 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 criteria will be covered in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to choose an HVAC vocational school, let’s look at what a heating and a/c contractor does to become a licensed professional tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Specialist in Lafayette TN

Lafayette TN HVAC tech servicing industrial furnacesHVAC is an acronym that is frequently used in the business that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC contractors provide services for the installation, repair and maintenance of central air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As skilled tradesmen, they are typically required to be licensed, though each state and local municipality has its own criteria. Obtaining professional certification is not compulsory, but an optional way for Lafayette TN HVAC specialists to prove that they are exceptionally skilled and experienced in their area of expertise. There are multiple acknowledged certifications within the field that are offered. Following are some of the significant ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is attained by passing a proficiency 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 field experience together with passing a comprehensive examination 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 examination. Similar to NATE, certifications are provided in multiple specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for specialists that handle refrigerants. There are three types of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Because licensing could be mandated in your location, and you may also intend to obtain certification, it’s essential that you choose an HVAC technical school that will train you for both. And since you will most likely be working with refrigerants, make certain that the program you decide on preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Certificate and Degree Classes

Lafayette TN HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are a variety of alternatives available for HVAC instruction in a trade or technical school. You can attain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the lesser period of time, typically achieved in just 6 months, though some programs are longer. A certificate will qualify you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification relevant to the position. The degree programs might provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will provide more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief summary of each option offered near Lafayette TN.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning commercial or residential HVAC technicians. They provide a solid foundation of skills for job opportunities within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program delivers a more comprehensive background of heating & cooling systems than the certificate program. Typically requiring two years to complete, many 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 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 cooling systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Selecting the appropriate credential program will be based on what your long term career aspirations are, as well as the time and financial resources that you have to invest. One approach is to start with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after gaining some experience in the trade in Lafayette TN, later going back to acquire a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your tactic, make sure to ask the HVAC technician school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Training Online

attending HVAC Training School Online in Lafayette TNChoosing an HVAC program online is one possibility to getting your education and receiving a degree or certificate. Almost all schools will require some attendance on campus to complete practical training. Some also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or as an alternative to practical lab work. But since the rest of the classes may be participated in online, this approach may be a more convenient solution for many Lafayette TN students that are short on time. And some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even travelling expenses from Lafayette and study supplies can be lessened, helping to make schooling more affordable. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your job or family commitments have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it less complicated to fit school into your active schedule.

What to Ask HVAC Certification Classes near Lafayette TN

Once you have decided on the type of certificate or degree that you wish to obtain, either on campus or online, you can begin to decrease your selection of schools. As you are probably aware, there are a large number of HVAC technical schools in the Lafayette TN area and throughout the United States to choose from. That’s why it is very important to have a checklist of important qualifications when making school comparisons. As earlier stated in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will undoubtedly be the first two factors you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you need to explore before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC vocational programs in the Lafayette TN area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for instance HVAC technology. Verify that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it can help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, many states require that the HVAC training course be accredited in order to be approved 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 percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate could signify that students were unhappy with the course and quit. It might also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of alumni, which may result in more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Lafayette TN HVAC employers to help students secure apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  A large number of HVAC technical 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 Heating and Cooling businesses or trade unions. Check if the schools you are considering have referring relationships with local Lafayette TN HVAC companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make sure that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the HVAC technician you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Lafayette TN HVAC contracting company if they can provide some suggestions. Also keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school must be within commuting distance of your Lafayette TN home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you get as much personalized training 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 instructors and students. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, 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 evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Lafayette TN, check that the schools you are looking at offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make 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, illness or family emergencies.

Attending HVAC School near Lafayette TN?

Lafayette, Tennessee

Lafayette is located at 36°31′32″N 86°01′34″W / 36.525595°N 86.026246°W / 36.525595; -86.026246.[7] The city is situated near the center of Macon County, along a relatively broad stretch of the northern Highland Rim. Lafayette straddles a divide between the Barren River and Cumberland River, with streams in the northeastern part of the city (including Town Creek) draining into the former, and streams in the southwestern part of the city draining into the latter.

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 3,885 people, 1,718 households, and 1,089 families residing in the city. The population density was 888.4 people per square mile (343.3/km2). There were 1,845 housing units at an average density of 421.9 per square mile (163.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.89% White, 0.15% African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.39% Asian, 0.26% Pacific Islander, 0.51% from other races, and 0.46% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.11% of the population.

There were 1,718 households out of which 26.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.2% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.6% were non-families. 34.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.79.

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Pick the Right HVAC Training Classes near Lafayette TN

Selecting the ideal HVAC training program is an important first step toward a gratifying career in the heating and air conditioning field. As we have discussed in this article, you need to pick a technical school and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the HVAC field. Other things to search for are sufficient practical 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 talk 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 if evening or weekend classes are offered if needed. And remember to inquire about financial aid and student loan options also. If you ask the right questions as we have laid out in our guidelines 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 eventually become a licensed HVAC contractor in Lafayette TN.

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