Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic Courses Employ Practical Application

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    Jun 29, 2013
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Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic Courses Employ Practical Application Photo by Jason White

If you are ready for a career as a refrigeration and air conditioning mechanic, look no further than Centennial College's Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic program, which employs a practical approach with much opportunity to hands-on learning. This program takes three years to complete (1 year basic level, 1 year intermediate level and 1 year advanced level) and results not only in a Certificate of Completion, but also in the know-how to write the exam for a certificate of qualification. Passing this exam means a student qualifies for a certificate of apprenticeship from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities, and that he or she is certified in his or her chosen occupation.

But how do the air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic courses get students from novices to experts? First and foremost, in-school sessions are conducted at state-of-the-art facilities at one of the province’s largest trades training centres, Progress Campus. As such, students obtain knowledge of design, installation and service techniques of heating and air conditioning systems in residential and commercial buildings. Instructors who have extensive and current industry experience teach the topics within the air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic courses. Secondly, Centennial College prides itself on providing both a theoretical basis for students as well as practical application so each air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic courses is presented through both approaches.

Then, to round out this training, there is an apprenticeship aspect of on-the-job training with an employer. This experience allows the future refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics to apply knowledge from their in-school sessions and experience real-life scenarios that may be common once they graduate and enter the workforce. During this time, students are compensated for their work.

It is worth noting that those interested in attending the air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic course cannot apply directly to the College. For information about apprenticeship or apprenticeship registration, interested parties should contact the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities. Applicants must be currently employed as apprentices.

Upon graduation, some refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics specialize in one type of equipment, for example air conditioners, fridges, furnaces, gas burners and more. Regardless of their chosen area, common duties include: following blueprints and manufacturers' instructions to install the motors, compressors, condensing units, evaporators, pipes and ducts that make up refrigeration or air-conditioning units; connecting ducts and refrigerant (cooling) lines by welding and fitting pipe as well as checking to see that the unit is working properly; testing equipment, electrical circuits and control boxes, and looking for leaks in the system; removing worn parts and repairing or replacing them; sealing leaks and adding refrigerant; and more.

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As Jason notes in his article, air conditioning mechanic program at Centennial College prepare students for tasks such as installing, maintaining and repairing heating and cooling units.

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