Renewable energy has gained quite a bit of interest in the past decade, especially in the heating and cooling industry, but it’s never been a particularly important aspect of the industry — until now. Experts are now advising students that, if they want to get a good career in the heating and cooling industry, they’ll have to be very familiar with and dedicated to energy conservation.
Officials at both Calhoun Community College and Drake State Technical College, which are institutions that serve trainees in the energy industry, state that their energy conservation programs and training facilities, which were implemented in 2012, have become successful programs in the mere two years that they’ve existed. Not only do students flock to these specific programs, but graduates of the programs note that their education has been well worth the cost.
The focus on energy conservation isn’t necessarily responding to a current demand for more energy-efficient products; rather, industry experts have noted the growing concern with eco-friendly products and services, and they anticipate that even more jobs in the future will require extensive knowledge of energy conservation and environmental awareness.
Energy conservation programs focus on everything regarding the basics of solar photovoltaic, solar thermal, and geothermal equipment used in HVAC systems, and students are able to receive additional training (i.e., not centered around HVAC systems) about solar, geothermal, and wind energy alternatives.
As energy standards change — almost too quickly for anyone to keep up with — new students are required to be knowledgeable of older heating and cooling systems, but they are also encouraged to approach traditional systems with a creative mindset and to focus on providing customers with the most affordable and compatible eco-friendly products.
Although the focus on energy efficiency may come as a surprise to some, the heating and cooling business, industry experts have been focusing on developing eco-friendly products for quite some time, and many companies already offer a wide variety of these products to consumers.
“While in the past your HVAC systems were somewhat of a commodity and solved a basic need, today in the current economic climate they have evolved to a way to save on your monthly budget,” says Chris Long, Director of Sales and Marketing at All Seasons Comfort Control. “People coming into the industry will certainly have an edge on their peers if familiar with energy efficient tactics.”
If current industry trends are any indication, it’s likely that more energy efficient products will become more available — and more affordable — to all homeowners. As more students enter energy conservation programs, such as the ones offered by Calhoun Community College and Drake State Technical College, more time and money can be devoted to research and development programs. And if saving the environment isn’t a compelling reason on its own, it’s important to remember that these programs are also providing younger working Americans will valuable, forward-thinking jobs.