Accredited HVAC Schools in Anchorage, AK
Aspiring technicians choosing formal classroom training instead of an apprenticeship should first confirm that the school of their choice is accredited. Accreditation is the process by which an independent agency evaluates the quality of the curriculum and instructors of a program.
Two industry organizations are responsible for accrediting HVAC programs. HVAC Excellence has not yet accredited an Alaska program. The Partnership for Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigeration Accreditation (PAHRA) has awarded accreditation to Alaska Vocational Technical Center (AVTEC) in Seward. Although attending AVTEC would require a lengthy commute for Anchorage students, it is included in the profiles below due to its accreditation.
Alaska Vocational Technical Center
AVTEC offers two certificate programs: plumbing and heating technology and refrigeration. Both programs divide the coursework between 50 percent hands-on training and 50 percent classroom instruction. Graduates are qualified to seek employment in entry-level positions or participate in an apprenticeship.
Students in the plumbing and heating program complete coursework in electricity, heating, and plumbing. They are awarded certificates as plumbing and heating technicians, plumbing and heating repairs, or plumbing and heating assistant repairers, depending on their level of competence.
The curriculum for the refrigeration program includes electricity, as well as basic and advanced refrigeration. Students also prepare for and take industry certification exams that include OSHA Safety, EPA Section 608, Industrial Competency Exam (ICE), and Industrial First Aid and CPR. Graduates are awarded certificates as a refrigeration technician, refrigeration repairer, or refrigeration assistant repairer, based on their competence.
- Location: Seward, AK
- Accreditation: PAHRA; Commission of the Council on Occupational Education
- Tuition: Plumbing and heating $3,528; refrigeration $4,131
- Format: On-campus
- Program Length: Plumbing and heating 18 weeks; refrigeration 20 weeks
Charter, a private school, offers an HVAC certificate program. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for entry-level positions and includes HVAC science; electricity; refrigeration; air properties’ pipe, duct, and flue systems’ refrigerants and oils; commercial refrigeration systems; maintenance and startup; controls; gas and oil heating systems; boiler, chiller, and cooling tower systems; residential and commercial HVAC and heat pumps; energy conservation; heat recovery; air quality; and the fundamentals of technology.
Non-technical classes, which may be completed online, include student and professional success strategies. Students complete a total of 72 credit-hours to earn a certificate.
- Location: Anchorage, AK
- Accreditation: Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools; Authorized by Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education
- Tuition: $24,480 *
- Format: On-campus and online
- Program Length: 10 months
*Alaska Native & American and Canadian Indian Tuition Discount (15 percent) applies to Alaska Native & American and Canadian Indian students. Proof of eligibility is required.
University of Alaska, Anchorage
The University of Alaska offers occupational endorsement certificates (OEC), an undergraduate certificate, and an associate’s degree in refrigeration and heating technology at the Matanuska-Susitna College campus.
The commercial refrigeration OEC includes coursework in refrigeration and air conditioning, electrical circuits, and troubleshooting HVAC/R systems. Students must complete 17 credit-hours to earn their certificate and are prepared for entry-level positions. The residential and light commercial HVAC OEC curriculum includes HVAC/R controls, customer relations and job etiquette, heating and forced air heat, commercial HVAC/R systems, and hydronic heat systems. Students complete 16 credit-hours to earn a certificate.
The undergraduate certificate program includes the OEC coursework, with the addition of technical math, thermodynamics, HVAC/R codes, commercial and ammonia refrigeration, and HVAC/R sheet metal, for a total of 51 credit-hours. Graduates are qualified to sit for the Section 608 and NATE entry-level certification exams. They are also eligible for institutional recommendation for the Unlimited Refrigeration Mechanical Administrator license.
Students seeking a degree complete all the coursework for the certificate programs, as well as general education requirements. Their degree is awarded at the completion of 60 credit-hours. The credits and coursework may be applied toward a bachelor of science in the applied technologies leadership program.
- Location: Palmer, AK
- Accreditation: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
- Tuition: OEC $223 per credit-hour; undergraduate and upper-division $269 per credit-hour
- Format: On-campus
- Program Length: Timeline for certificates vary; degree requires two years
Anchorage workers who are unable to attend a local school may find that online HVAC training at an accredited online school will meet their needs. The online automotive HVAC program at Ashworth College in Wasilla, AK may be of interest to Anchorage technicians.