Have you ever wondered what exactly an HVAC Tech does? We know they’re the people who keep us cool and comfortable indoors, especially during the summer. But how do they do it? What did they learn to be able to do this job? Do we really even need trained technicians? We sat down with HVAC Instructor Jason Taylor at Cleveland State Community College (CSCC) to answer these questions and more.
How do you define Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC)?
HVAC deals with all the workings of mechanical systems in residential and commercial buildings.
What is the need for HVAC Technicians right now?
There’s such a large need. We’re expecting a 15 percent industry growth in the next 10 years with construction booming locally and nationwide. The average age of HVAC technicians right now is 62 years old. We are looking to have over 40 percent of the workforce retire in the next 10 years in addition to the 15 percent industry growth. We really need a larger growth of new HVAC techs to keep up.
What is the HVAC program at Cleveland State Community College?
The HVAC program here is a total of two semesters or 32 weeks. There are six different classes that will teach you the theory of HVAC, the electrical side, system designs of HVAC and advanced troubleshooting. This differs from other programs as this is a one-year take of the certificate [program] allowing you to be done in two semesters. Other schools either have only one semester or a two-year program.
After obtaining certification, what are possible jobs available to new technicians?
We have a lot of local employers send their current employees in to achieve certification. Additionally, some people join the program to be able to work at any local HVAC business. You can be an HVAC technician, mechanical maintenance worker and other general fields available for HVAC specialists.
What are some traits that would make someone a successful HVAC technician?
One of the best interests to get involved with HVAC is wanting to help people because you will be helping so many. It is also a good choice for people who like to be hands-on and like to facilitate and see tangible change. This is also a great path for people who like instant gratification.
Why should someone pursue HVAC?
It is a very rewarding experience to be able to work all day every day in this field. It’s lucrative and a career you can build a life on. I know this from personal experience. I was in HVAC from when I was 18 years old until I was 34. I then switched to HVAC education to recruit more people into the field since there is such a growing need.
For more information about HVAC careers, check out our HVAC career outlook.
To learn more about CSCC’s HVAC program, visit their website.