HVAC Schools Near Me in Nashville TN 37201

How to Choose an HVAC School near Nashville Tennessee

Nashville TN HVAC tech servicing AC compressorOnce you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning specialist, the next step is to choose an HVAC vocational school near Nashville TN. But with so many to pick from, how do you select the ideal one to obtain the training that you require? A number of prospective students will make their choice based exclusively on the price of tuition or how close the school is to their residence. Although these are necessary factors to consider, they are not the only ones to take into account. Some of the other things that you need to investigate are the graduation rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. These and other benchmarks will be discussed in more detail later in this article. But before we explore how to pick an HVAC training program, let’s take a look at what a heating and a/c technician does to become a licensed professional tradesman.

Becoming an HVAC Pro in Nashville TN

Nashville TN 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 air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, hot water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are typically mandated to be licensed, although each state and regional municipality has its own requirements. Obtaining professional certification is not required, but an alternative way for Nashville TN HVAC technicians to establish that they are highly qualified and knowledgeable in their area of specialization. There are many acknowledged certifications within the trade that are available. Below are a few 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 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 as well as passing a comprehensive exam are needed for the professional level certification. Master specialists need to have three years of experience along with a passing result on the professional level examination. As with NATE, certifications are provided in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is necessary for specialists that handle refrigerants. There are three forms of certification obtainable, 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 intend to acquire certification, it’s imperative that you choose an HVAC technical school that will prepare you for both. And since you will more than likely be working with refrigerants, make sure that the school you pick readies you for passing the EPA Section 608 exams.

HVAC Degree and Certificate Classes

Nashville TN HVAC contractor installing residential water heaterThere are a variety of choices available for HVAC instruction in a vocational or trade school. You can earn a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Obtaining a certificate will take the minimum amount of time, usually accomplished in just 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 may provide a competitive edge for securing employment and will provide more in-depth training than the certificate programs. Following is a brief description of each credential offered near Nashville TN.

  • Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are very popular among beginning residential or commercial HVAC professionals. They provide a strong foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more exhaustive background of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Usually taking two years to complete, many degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is tailored more for a career in management as well as business ownership. Some programs call for an Associate Degree, while others are a conventional 4 year program. In addition to being taught how to service and maintain heating and air conditioning systems, you will also study how to design them.

Choosing the appropriate credential program will be based on what your long term career goals are, in addition to the time and money that you have to commit. One possibility is to begin with a certificate or even an Associate Degree program, and after getting some experience in the trade in Nashville TN, eventually going back to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make certain to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Classes Online

attending HVAC Training School Online in Nashville TNAttending an HVAC program online is one option to attaining your training and earning a certificate or degree. Almost all schools will require some attendance on campus to complete practical training. Some also provide 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 online, this approach may be a more accessible solution for many Nashville TN students that are pressed for time. And many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even commuting expenses from Nashville and study supplies can be minimized, helping to make schooling more affordable. And numerous online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family commitments have left you with limited time to attend classes, perhaps an HVAC online training program will make it easier to accommodate school into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask HVAC Trade Schools near Nashville TN

As soon as you have selected the type of degree or certificate that you would like to obtain, either online or on campus, you can start to decrease your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are numerous HVAC trade schools in the Nashville TN area and all over the USA to choose from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a list of relevant qualifiers when making school evaluations. As previously mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will most likely be the first two variables you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  A large number of HVAC technical programs in the Nashville TN area have acquired 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 an individual program, such as HVAC technology. Verify that the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you acquire a quality education, it can help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, a number of states require that the HVAC training course be accredited for it to be approved 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 lower completion rate could indicate that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It may also signify that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize 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 Nashville TN HVAC employers to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or jobs.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Numerous HVAC vocational programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of HVAC contractors or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with local Nashville TN HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make sure that the school facilities and the tools 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, check with the HVAC specialist you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Nashville TN HVAC contracting company if they can provide some suggestions. Additionally bear in mind that unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Nashville TN residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you receive as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger 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 opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to some of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.

Flexible Scheduling.  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Nashville TN, check that the schools you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.

Attending HVAC School near Nashville TN?

Nashville, Tennessee

Nashville (/ˈnæʃvɪl/[6]) is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Tennessee and the seat of Davidson County.[7] It is located on the Cumberland River in northern Middle Tennessee. The city is a center for the music,[8] healthcare, publishing, private prison,[9] banking and transportation industries, and is home to numerous colleges and universities.

Since 1963, Nashville has had a consolidated city-county government, which includes six smaller municipalities in a two-tier system. The city is governed by a mayor, a vice-mayor, and a 40-member Metropolitan Council; 35 of the members are elected from single-member districts, while the other five are elected at-large. Reflecting the city's position in state government, Nashville is home to the Tennessee Supreme Court's courthouse for Middle Tennessee.

According to 2017 estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, the total consolidated city-county population stood at 691,243.[3] The "balance" population, which excludes semi-independent municipalities within Davidson County, was 667,560 (2017).[5] The 2017 population of the entire 13-county Nashville metropolitan area was 1,903,045, making it the largest metropolitan statistical area in Tennessee.[4] The 2015 population of the Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Columbia combined statistical area, a larger trade area, was 2,027,489.[10]

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Enroll in the Right HVAC Training Classes near Nashville TN

Enrolling in the ideal HVAC training course is a crucial beginning toward a rewarding career in the heating and cooling trade. 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 excellent reputations within the HVAC community. Other factors to search for are lots of practical training and modern facilities. You should visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to tour the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Attempt to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. In addition, inquire about scheduling options and whether or not night or weekend classes are offered if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial assistance and student loan options too. If you ask the appropriate questions as we have detailed in our guidelines for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC specialist in Nashville TN.

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