The Southern Virginia Higher Education Center will soon begin holding information sessions for the HVAC@SVHEC program’s second year. Attending an information session is required before enrolling in the HVAC program.
Information sessions are scheduled as follows:
• Tuesday, Jan. 21 and 29 at 5 p.m.
• Wednesday and Jan. 30 at 2 p.m.
• Thursday at 10 a.m.
• Jan. 23 at 4 p.m.
• Jan. 28 at 3 p.m.
HVAC@SVHEC trainees will learn in-demand skills like heating, cooling, air distribution, refrigerants and oils, heat pumps, basic maintenance and more. In less than a year, individuals may earn industry recognized certifications including National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) HVAC Level 1 and 2, NCCER Core, National Career Readiness, EPA Refrigeration, EPA 608 Universal Refrigeration Card and OSHA 10.
“After completing the HVAC@SVHEC Level 1 and 2 residential program, trainees will have the skills to become employed as an HVAC helper,” said Jermaine Gooden, SVHEC trainee engagement specialist. “Then trainees will have the option for advancement into the Level 3 and 4 commercial program.”
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, HVAC technicians earn an average of $38,000 annually in Southside Virginia, and job openings for HVAC installers and mechanics are expected to grow by 15% within the next seven years. Although more than 500 individuals are employed in the HVAC industry in this region, employers cite difficulty in finding entry-level, work-ready technicians.
“Investing in the HVAC trade is an awesome opportunity to learn a skilled trade and make a great living,” said Chris Walton, owner/operator of Strategic Heating and Air, Inc. and HVAC@SVHEC instructor. “I would encourage anyone interested to come to an information session and see what we are all about.”
“We’re anticipating high demand for this program, and the training cohort will only have 16 spaces,” Gooden stated. “I strongly encourage anyone interested in the program to reserve a space by attending an information session soon.”