Why HVAC?

Every private residence, business, industry and agency needs the skill of technicians trained in the installation, maintenance and repair of air conditioning, refrigeration and heating systems. And because these systems are increasing in complexity, skilled technicians will be in higher demand in the future to keep them running at maximum capacity.

PTC’s HVAC program focuses on providing students with the theory and the real-world experience to fully understand the three main pillars of HVAC: air, electrical and mechanical. Students are then taught how to apply that knowledge to the same kind of challenges they’ll face on the job.

Students also graduate with a variety of additional certifications from HVAC Excellence covering the whole spectrum of skills needed in the field, which makes PTC graduates even more marketable.

PTC offers both an evening program and a day program in Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology. The evening program is designed primarily for people who work during the day.

Practical Experience & Flexible Scheduling

PTC's HVAC program is project driven. After technical information is covered in class, everything is directly applied through hands-on work.

Students design walk-in coolers, troubleshoot the same kinds of working systems they’ll see in the field, and work closely with PTC’s building construction technology program to design, install and test full HVAC systems in new construction. 

Students learn in state-of-the-art facilities including a brand new sheet metal lab, a weatherization facility, and a wide variety of HVAC equipment—all similar to what they’d find in the field.

The program also hosts regular factory and service seminars, in which suppliers provide training to students and for people in the field.

Because PTC is aware that many students need to balance the demands of work and family while attending classes, the HVAC program offers several options to increase flexibility for students who need to work around a busy schedule.

Students also graduate with a variety of additional certifications from HVAC Excellence covering the whole spectrum of skills needed in the field, which makes PTC graduates even more marketable.

“Right now, our employment rate since 2009, even in today’s tough job market, has been 94% placement,” he says. “Generally, there are more jobs out there than we have graduates.”
— Keenan Tallent, HVAC Instructor
Mark Lee graduated from PTC in 2002 and began working for a local heating and cooling company. With his business degree and HVAC degree, he decided to strike out on his own in 2009. He is now the owner and operator of Lee’s Heating and Cooling.  

Mark Lee graduated from PTC in 2002 and began working for a local heating and cooling company. With his business degree and HVAC degree, he decided to strike out on his own in 2009. He is now the owner and operator of Lee’s Heating and Cooling.

 

Solid Career Prospects

Demand for well qualified HVAC technicians in Piedmont Technical College's service region is constant. 

“Every maintenance job is looking for HVAC skills,” says Kibler, Interim Dean of Industrial Technology and Engineering. “We have a lot of students who are cross-training from other curriculum areas at the College because this skillset is in such high demand.”

Because many of the HVAC business owners and contractors in our region came through PTC’s program themselves, graduates can be sure they’re getting exactly the training they’ll need to go to work after graduation. 

 “There's a brotherhood here, and there’s also a culture that develops as students learn, network, and become familiar with the suppliers and the contractors,” says Keenan Tallent, HVAC instructor. “A lot of the local contractors cut their teeth in this program--this is where they got their basics, so they know the program is turning out well-educated graduates, and good workers.”

According to Mark Penland, a second-year student, the HVAC program is a great choice for anyone looking for a rewarding, hands-on career. “The job market for this program has openings just about anywhere you could imagine,” he says. “You can earn a great living and challenge yourself every day.”

“We really care about our students,” says Kibler. “They’re here because they know what they’re learning can change their lives. We’re passionate about what we do because we see every day the positive impact this kind of knowledge transfer has on them.”