The Instructors Workshop exhibit hall included textbook publishers, along with manufacturers, trade press, and trade associations.

LANSDOWNE, Va. - The 14th Annual HVACR & Plumbing Instructor Workshop drew close to 300 attendees and drew upon the theme “Leading the Industry to a Greener Future” in many of the presentations and exhibits.

The opening session featured a panel of speakers including Bill Parlapiano III, BP Consulting; John Troutman, Elsevier eLearning; Joel Owen, Alabama Power; and Gregg Harris, Cropp Metcalfe addressing, “How Green is Changing the Way We Train Future Technicians.”

Other green topics had such titles as “Greenhouse Gasses and Appliance Efficiency,” “Cast Iron in Green Construction,” and “Green Technology.”

Beyond that, there were a number of sessions focused on aspects of how to teach, how to improve skills as an instructor, developing lesson plans, and a session on “Communicating with Power and Influence.”

On the technical side were such topics as duct leakage, R-22 to R-410A changes, scroll compressors, commercial refrigeration motors, and radiant heating.

Yet another aspect of the workshop was interaction among representatives of the sponsoring trade associations and the instructor attendees. One such session was a panel discussion with association representatives explaining their services, and offering tips for instructors in securing equipment donations and industry expertise.

David Boyd of Appion Inc. discusses recovery equipment with attendees of the 14th Annual HVACR & Plumbing Instructors Workshop.

A recurring theme in that panel session was the importance of instructors helping to bring qualified technicians into the industry. As noted by AHRI’s Warren Lupson, who also was chair of the workshop, “Our stuff can’t be outsourced.”

After 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. classes and workshop, attendees were given a couple hours for dinner and a bit of free time before reassembling in an exhibit hall where more than 40 manufacturers, trade associations, and textbook publishers had tabletop displays showing their latest products and services.

Renee Tomlinson of the Refrigeration Service Engineers Society is joined by representatives of other industry trade associations in discussing how such groups can assist HVACR and plumbing instructors.

The workshop was jointly sponsored by Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA); Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI); Council of Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Educators (CARE); North American Technician Excellence (NATE); Heating, Airconditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI); PHCC Educational Foundation; Refrigeration Service Engineers Society (RSES); and SkillsUSA.

Concerning the three-day annual event, Lupson said, “The Instructor Workshop is an industry-driven event that provides instructors and administrators of apprentice and secondary/postsecondary school-based instructional programs with technical information and teaching techniques that will enable them to effectively train the next generation of skilled workers for the HVACR and plumbing industries.”

Publication date:04/13/2009