HOUSTON — Brown Technical Media Corp., a division of Panther Biotechnology, announced that it has executed an exclusive distribution and publishing agreement with The Training Center of Air Conditioning and Heating. This transaction further expands Brown's strategy to utilize virtual reality in the eLearning segment of its business.

Brown is disrupting the technical vocations training and certification industry by creating a full-service training and career advancement brand in the technical fields, and this transaction signifies our launch to disrupt the HVAC space. Brown is replacing traditional, decades-old training methodologies by modernizing learning techniques with virtual reality technology. Brown is introducing virtual reality environment-based (VRE) training into technical skill trades and believe it will make as big an impact in these fields that VREs now have in the medicine, health care, science, and engineering professions. According to Goldman Sachs, the market for VRE software is estimated to be $35 billion by 2025.

Currently, HVAC service technicians are educated and trained via in-person, instructional classrooms and work labs. Brown has invested significant resources in replicating the Chris Walters educational process for online delivery. A video production team has been working with Walters for the past four months, creating a variety of HVAC eLearning products including a full HVAC technician course that includes the simulation of the hands on experience of the lab and physical school itself. In addition, the publishing team has been working to create a full handbook to accompany the online course. 

"Chris Walters is a world class technician with decades of field experience turned master instructor of the HVAC industry. His unique teaching style produces technicians who are sought after by employers in the Houston metro market," exclaimed Jocynda Rodriguez, lead editor of Brown Publications HVAC.

"Our innovation could not have come at a more opportune time," stated Evan Levine, CEO of Panther. "Currently, one-third of all nationally skilled tradesmen are over fifty-five years of age and retiring at an accelerated rate, and, unfortunately, there are not enough skilled tradesman to replace them."

"Portable, eLearning based VREs can reach out to a larger trainee population in a cost-effective manner while providing new learning experiences that are far more price competitive to deliver," stated Noah Davis, president and COO of Panther. "Students who struggle to pass their respective state level exams to become a licensed tech will find VREs as an attractive, learning assist tool given their rich, interactive environment. Brown will continue to upgrade the vocational training vertical with proven technology for their intended applications."

The eLearning course will be highlighted by a 3D virtual reality section that will allow students to experience the lab in their home. This course will be the first of its kind in the HVAC vocational eLearning space. Brown is also releasing its newest website dedicated to HVAC contractors and technicians. The website will have a full array of education and certification products including the release of the handbook and course. 

For more information, visit hvac.browntechnical.org.

Publication date: 1/20/2017

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