How to Select the Right HVAC Certificate Program near Herlong California
Now that you have made a decision on a career as a heating and cooling professional, the next step is to choose an HVAC vocational school near Herlong CA. But with so many to pick from, how do you decide on the right one to get 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 residence. While these are significant considerations, they are not the only ones to investigate. A few of the other things that you need to investigate are the graduation completion rates of the HVAC schools, their reputations, and if they are accredited by professional trade organizations. Those and additional criteria will be covered in more detail later within this article. But before we discuss how to pick an HVAC trade school, let’s take a look at what a heating and cooling technician does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.
How to Become an HVAC Technician
HVAC is an acronym that is widely used in the business 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 required to be licensed, however each state and local municipality has its own criteria. Obtaining professional certification is not mandatory, but an alternative way for Herlong CA HVAC specialists to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and experienced in their area of specialization. There are a number of respected certifications within the industry that are available. Following are a few of the significant ones.
- North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally acknowledged certification for HVAC techs. The certification is achieved by passing a competency examination and can be earned in one or more specialties.
- HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. Two years of professional experience together with 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 offered in multiple specialties.
- EPA Section 608. This certification is mandatory for techs that work with refrigerants. There are three forms of certification available, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.
Since licensing might be required in your location, and you may also wish to earn certification, it’s essential that you select an HVAC vocational school that will train you for both. And since you will probably be working with refrigerants, make sure that the program you decide on preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.
HVAC Certificate and Degree Training Programs
There are a variety of alternatives offered for HVAC instruction in a technical or trade school. You can obtain a certificate, an Associate Degree, or a Bachelor’s Degree. Acquiring a certificate will take the lesser period of time, typically completed in as little as six months, though some programs are longer. A certificate will train you for most HVAC positions, particularly if you are licensed and have certification applicable to the position. The degree programs might provide a competitive advantage in the job market and will furnish more comprehensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a brief summary of each option offered near Herlong CA.
- Certificate. Normally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning residential or commercial HVAC technicians. They furnish a strong foundation of skills for employment within the trade.
- Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more detailed understanding of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Generally requiring 2 years to finish, 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 require an Associate Degree, while others are a traditional 4 year program. In addition to learning how to service and maintain heating and cooling systems, you will also study how to design them.
Choosing the ideal credential program will be based on what your long term career goals are, along with 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 field in Herlong CA, later returning to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your strategy, be sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are looking at about how their returning student program works.
HVAC Online Schools
Enrolling in an HVAC program online is one possibility in attaining your training and receiving a degree or certificate. Most schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete practical training. Many also provide internship or work-study programs in addition to or in place of practical lab work. But since the balance of the classes may be participated in on the web, this option may be a more accessible solution for some Herlong CA students that are short on time. And a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even travelling expenses from Herlong and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your work or family commitments have left you with minimal time to attend classes, maybe an online HVAC degree program will make it less complicated to accommodate school into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask HVAC Training Programs
After you have decided on the type of degree or certificate that you want to acquire, either on campus or online, you can begin to limit your selection of schools. As you are probably aware, there are numerous HVAC vocational schools in the Herlong CA area and all over the United States to select from. That’s why it is extremely important to have a checklist of relevant qualifications when making school comparisons. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the first two aspects you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you should investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accreditation. Numerous HVAC trade programs in the Herlong CA area have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Make certain that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, some states require that the HVAC training program be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.
High Completion Rates. Ask the HVAC schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate might indicate that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It might also indicate that the teachers were not qualified to train the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which may produce more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Herlong CA HVAC employers to assist grads secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many HVAC trade programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of Heating and Cooling businesses or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have working relationships with local Herlong CA HVAC professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the HVAC tech you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Herlong CA HVAC contracting company if they can provide some tips. Also keep in mind that unless you are able to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Herlong CA residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Make sure that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Herlong CA, verify that the schools you are comparing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family issues.
Considering an HVAC School near Herlong CA?
Perhaps you are considering enrolling in an HVAC training program in the Herlong California area. If so, you may find the following background information about the location of your new school campus both interesting and informative.
Herlong is a census-designated place in Lassen County, California. Herlong is located at the extreme eastern edge of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range in the southeastern region of Honey Lake Valley, 8 miles (13 km) north of Doyle, at an elevation of 4,114 feet (1,254 m). Herlong is located in southern Lassen County near the southeast edge of Honey Lake, about 70 miles (110 km) north of Reno, Nevada, and about 45 miles (72 km) south of Susanville, the county seat. The community is accessible to U.S. Route 395 via Lassen County Route A25 or Lassen County Route A26.
Herlong was developed in 1942 after the attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II, to house civilian workers to support the Sierra Army Depot, one of several ammunition storage facilities located inland in order to be safe from Japanese attack. The site also met the requirement of being a dry and isolated area. The community was named after Captain Henry W. Herlong, the first United States Army ordnance officer to die in World War II. The postal stamps, money orders and equipment bore the spelling "Hurlong", which lasted for about five days; the error was discovered and corrected.
In the 21st century, Sierra Army Depot serves as the Army's End of First Life Center and the CONUS-based Army Prepositioned Stock Site. It continues to provide expeditionary logistics support and long-term sustainment solutions.
Air Condition Classes Herlong CA
Picking the ideal HVAC training program is a crucial beginning toward a rewarding career in the heating & cooling trade. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding Air Condition Classes. However, as we have addressed in this article, you should pick an Heating and Cooling trade school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC profession. Other factors to search for are plenty of hands-on training and modern facilities. You need to visit each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to tour the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Also, ask about scheduling options and if evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And remember to inquire about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the proper questions as we have laid out in our guidelines for evaluating schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an educated decision. With the appropriate training, hard work and dedication, you can eventually become a licensed HVAC technician in Herlong CA.
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