SILVER SPRING, MD - In cooperation with the Air Conditioning Contractors of America-National Capital Chapter (ACCA-NCC), theWashington Timesheld a meeting at the chapter’s facility recently with representatives of the hvac industry, school systems, hvac teachers, school counselors, and others to discuss ways to build partnerships between contractors and community college and high school hvac programs.

Douglas Alexander, educational services manager of the Times, noted that some of the benefits identified for contractors of developing a school partnership are:

  • By working hands-on with hvac students, you can identify the best potential future employees.
  • Having personal relationships with students gives you the best opportunity to recruit them.
  • Your contracting firm, with ACCA, can make sure that the students’ hvac education is up-to-date and meets the needs of the industry.
  • It gives you the opportunity to mentor, tutor, and counsel these students, to help them become good people as well as good future installers/technicians.
  • It allows you to make a difference in the lives of these young people by showing them the way to a meaningful and profitable career.
  • Contractor activities that can be part of a school partnership program include:

  • Providing job shadowing, which allows students to follow your employees on the job to find out what the work is all about.
  • Talking at school career days and/or doing presentations in the classroom.
  • Providing summer employment or internships to give students on-the-job training and experience.
  • Giving class tours of your facility or a jobsite.
  • For most of these activities, Alexander pointed out, liability resides with the school system as a school program. With summer employment, liability is the same as with any employee.

    Attendees agreed that there is a lot to be gained by working together.

    This report provides information for contractors living in the North Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S. This includes Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, the District of Columbia, Pennsylvania, and New York. If you have information from this region, please contact Greg Mazurkiewicz at 810-296-9580; 810-296-9581 (fax); or (e-mail).

    Publication date: 01/15/2001

    Web date: 06/18/2001