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How to Choose HVAC Degree Programs Tecumseh NE

How to Pick the Right HVAC Program near Tecumseh Nebraska

air conditioner condensers in Tecumseh NEOnce you have come to a decision on a career as a heating and air conditioning technician, the next action is to choose an HVAC vocational school near Tecumseh NE. But with so many to pick from, how do you select the ideal one to receive the training that you need? Some prospective students will make their choice based exclusively on the cost of tuition or how near the school is to their residence. While these are significant concerns, they are not the only ones to take into account. Just some of the other details 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 in this article. But before we explore how to select an HVAC training program, let’s look at what a heating and cooling professional does to become a licensed skilled tradesman.

How to Become an HVAC Pro

Tecumseh NE HVAC Tech installing water heaterHVAC is an acronym that is extensively used in the trade that stands for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning”. HVAC technicians specialize in the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioners, furnaces, boilers, water heaters and heating systems. As professional tradesmen, they are commonly required to be licensed, although each state and regional municipality has its own prerequisites. Attaining professional certification is not compulsory, but an alternative means for Tecumseh NE HVAC specialists to establish that they are exceptionally qualified and accomplished in their area of expertise. There are a number of recognized certifications within the industry that are offered. Below are some of the important ones.

  • North American Technician Excellence (NATE). NATE is a nationally recognized certification for HVAC technicians. The certification is earned by passing a proficiency exam and can be acquired in one or more specialties.
  • HVAC Excellence. This certification makes available both a professional and a master specialist credential. 2 years of field experience together with 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 score on the professional level examination. As with NATE, certifications are offered in several specialties.
  • EPA Section 608. This certification is required for technicians that handle refrigerants. There are 3 types of certification obtainable, one for small appliances, and the other two for low and high pressure refrigerants.

Since licensing could be mandated in your location, and you may also wish to earn certification, it’s important that you pick an HVAC technical school that will train you for both. And since you will more than likely be dealing with refrigerants, make certain that the program you decide on preps you for passing the EPA Section 608 examinations.

HVAC Degree Classes

radiator heater in Tecumseh NE homeThere are several alternatives available for HVAC instruction in a technical or vocational 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, although some courses 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 can provide a competitive edge in the job market and will deliver more extensive training than the certificate programs. Below is a short description of each option offered near Tecumseh NE.

  • Certificate. Generally requiring a high school diploma, certificate programs are preferred among beginning residential or commercial HVAC technicians. They provide a strong foundation of skills for job opportunities within the industry.
  • Associate Degree. The Associate Degree in HVAC program supplies a more exhaustive knowledge of heating and a/c systems than the certificate program. Typically requiring two years to finish, some degrees feature an internship or work-study program.
  • Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor’s Degree in HVAC is geared more towards 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 air conditioning systems, you will also learn how to design them.

Choosing the ideal credential program will be based on what your long term career goals are, as well as the time and money that you have to invest. One option is to begin with a certificate or perhaps an Associate Degree program, and after acquiring some experience in the field in Tecumseh NE, subsequently going back to earn a Bachelor’s Degree. If this is your approach, make sure to ask the HVAC tech school you are considering about how their returning student program works.

HVAC Schools Online

Tecumseh NE student attending HVAC school onlineEnrolling in an HVAC school online is one possibility to obtaining your education and receiving a degree or certificate. Almost all schools will call for some attendance on campus to complete hands on training. Some also sponsor internship or work-study programs in addition to or instead of practical lab work. But since the remainder of the classes can be attended online, this option may be a more accessible solution for some Tecumseh NE students that are pressed for time. And some online degree programs are more economical than other traditional choices. Even commuting expenses from Tecumseh and study materials can be reduced, helping to make schooling more affordable. And numerous online schools are fully accredited (more on this later). So if your career or family responsibilities have left you with minimal time to attend classes, perhaps an online HVAC degree program will make it less complicated to accommodate school into your busy schedule.

Questions For HVAC Trade Schools

Questions to ask Tecumseh NE HVAC training schoolsWhen you have decided on the type of certificate or degree that you want to earn, either on campus or online, you can start to decrease your selection of schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are many HVAC technical schools in the Tecumseh NE area and across the United States to choose from. That’s why it is imperative to have a checklist of key qualifiers when making school comparisons. As previously stated in our opening paragraph, location and tuition will probably be the first 2 variables you will look at. Following are some additional ones that you should investigate before enrolling in your school of choice.

Accreditation.  Numerous HVAC vocational programs in the Tecumseh NE area have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, such as HVAC technology. Confirm that the school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, some states require that the HVAC training program 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 portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A lower completion rate may indicate that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It might also indicate that the teachers 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 broader 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 can not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Tecumseh NE HVAC employers to help graduates obtain apprenticeships or employment.

Apprenticeship Programs.  Numerous HVAC training programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of HVAC businesses or trade unions. Check if the schools you are considering have working relationships with local Tecumseh NE HVAC specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional HVAC professional community.

Modern Facilities.  Make sure that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the HVAC technician you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Tecumseh NE HVAC contractor if they can give you some pointers. Additionally keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Tecumseh NE home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Smaller Classes.   It’s important that you receive as much one-on-one training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between instructors and students. Talk with several of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Flexible Scheduling.  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Tecumseh NE, check that the programs you are looking at 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, illness or family issues.

Considering an HVAC School near Tecumseh NE?

Perhaps you are considering enrolling in an HVAC training program in the Tecumseh Nebraska area.  If so, you may find the following background information about the location of your new school campus both interesting and informative.

Tecumseh, Nebraska

Tecumseh was originally called Frances, and under the latter name was established in 1856.[7] The label of Frances has long been falsely attributed as the name of the wife of Col. Richard M Johnson, the namesake of Johnson County. Johnson's only marriage was to Julia Chinn, a common-law spouse. Julia Chinn, was an octoroon slave (one-eighth African, seven-eighths European in ancestry), born into slavery around 1790.[8][9] Some historians have accepted the possibility that the legislature intended to name the county seat after Francis Burt, the first Governor of the Nebraska Territory.[10] Shortly after being founded, the name was changed to Tecumseh after the Native American Chief said to have been killed by Johnson during the Battle of the Thames. The Nebraska Territorial Legislature established Tecumseh as the county seat in February 1857.[11]

Tecumseh is located at 40°22′12″N 96°11′30″W / 40.37000°N 96.19167°W / 40.37000; -96.19167 (40.370061, -96.191639).[12] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.50 square miles (3.88 km2), all of it land.[1]

As of the census[2] of 2010, 1,677 people, 722 households, and 447 families resided in the city. The population density was 1,118.0 inhabitants per square mile (431.7/km2). The 887 housing units averaged 591.3 per square mile (228.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 82.5% White, 0.4% African American, 0.1% Native American, 3.2% Asian, 12.9% from other races, and 0.8% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 16.2% of the population.

How to Choose HVAC Degree Programs Tecumseh NE

Picking the right HVAC school program is an important beginning toward a gratifying career in the heating & cooling industry. You originally came to this website because you wanted more information regarding How to Choose HVAC Degree Programs. However, as we have covered in this post, you should pick an Heating and Cooling technical school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the HVAC profession. Other features to search for are ample practical training and modern facilities. You need to visit each of the schools in person that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the current students and faculty. Try to get a feel for the quality of the instruction and the interaction between them. Also, ask about scheduling options and whether or not evening or weekend classes are available if needed. And don’t forget to inquire about financial aid and student loan options as well. If you ask the proper questions as we have outlined in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your options so that you can make an educated decision. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, you can ultimately become a licensed HVAC professional in Tecumseh NE.

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