Kansas is a midwestern state that is located in the center of the United States and is famous for its thriving agricultural productivity. It neighbors Nebraska from the North, Missouri from the East, Oklahoma from the South and Colorado from the West. Kansas has 105 counties and 628 cities, and is located equidistant from the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. It has many nicknames to describe the beauty of the landscape and fertility of the soil such as The Garden of the West, The Sunflower State (due to the abundance of wild sunflowers), The Wheat State (as it is one of the most wheat-producing states), The Central State and The Midway State which both describe the convenient geographical location of Kansas. The state is famous for the Kansas river, the Missouri River and the Arkansas River that passes through Kansas.
There are many natural historic sites and natural parks in Kansas for people to visit all year round such as the Fort Scott National Historic Site, the Pony Express National Historic Trail and the California National Historic Trail. Kansas has humid continental climate on average, which means that its winters are cool to cold and summers are humid with precipitation usually falling in the spring and summer seasons. Kansas is a great place to live in for those who prefer peace and quiet as it is the fifteenth largest state in the United States by area yet the only the thirty-fourth most populous state in the United States. The second most spoken language in Kansas after English is Spanish. People from Kansas are normally referred to as Kansans due to their patriotism and pride for their state. Some famous state symbols that represent Kansas are the amphibian, sunflower, bird, soil, tree, and seal.
HVAC, which is short for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, is the technology that is mainly involved with controlling indoor temperature. HVAC is very important as HVAC technicians are needed to work with commercial, residential and industrial clients to make sure that indoor areas are made suitable for living and working conditions. So not only is HVAC important to people all around the world, but it is also in demand for office workers, company owners and indoor facilities of all sort such as schools, hospitals, factories, senior homes, apartment buildings skyscrapers, etc.
HVAC systems are usually implemented in the early stages of design of skyscrapers, apartments buildings, and single homes. That is why HVAC professionals usually work hand-in-hand with construction professionals throughout the process of building. HVAC is an important field of study and HVAC professionals are in demand almost everywhere in the world. Even businesses and home residences which already own installed HVAC systems will need system repairs at some point or even system replacements. So, for those passionate about this field of study, you will always have an opportunity to make someone’s life easier. HVAC study programs have become increasingly popular over the last few decades and obtaining a degree or certificate in HVAC is now made easier than ever. There are a number of great HVAC schools and training facilities in Kansas, which will be explored in this article.
Bryan University – Topkea
Located in Topeka, Kansas, Bryan University’s mission is to serve individuals who wish to pursue a traditional or hybrid college career, Bryan University aims to provide quality learning by implementing virtual learning in its degree programs. Bryan University’s mission is to provide students with career focused training that will allow them to learn exactly what they need in order to excel in their future careers. The university offers an HVAC diploma program that can be obtained in just one year before graduating and working as an entry level HVAC technician. The one year program includes the following areas of study: Basic Refrigeration, Electrical Training, Geothermal Systems and Residential Heating and Cooling Systems. The cost of the degree program is approximately $30,000. Students receive hands on learning in these fields and are able to implement their knowledge and theory practice in real life scenarios. Bryan University also provides the opportunity to gain EPA certification afterward completing the program.
Highland Community College
Highland Community College is located in Highland, Kansas and offers two-year college programs in various areas of study. HCC was the first college in Kansas and was founded in 1858. In 2008, the regional technical college combined with Highland Community College and allowed it to expand the range of different majors that it offers. Highland’s mission statement is to provide students with quality learning that will allow them to contribute to their communities and societies upon the completion of their degree and certificate programs. Highland Community College offers four associate degree programs and fifteen certificate programs. One of these programs is a one year certificate program in HVAC and plumbing. This program is known for being very practical and hands-on from the very beginning of the program. Students work with building trades and electrical technology programs in the construction of a house and get to diagnose, install and repair HVAC and plumbing problems that arise. Students may complete this program from as little as nine months. This certificate costs a little over $3,000 and consists of two academic semesters in order to complete the required courses.
Kansas City Kansas Community College
Kansas City Kansas Community College (KCKCC) is a two-year community college located in Kansas City, Kansas and offers several different degree programs. Among these programs is a technical certificate in Heating and Refrigeration. This certificate emphasizes the fundamentals of heating and refrigeration and specifies in central and room systems. The program offered at KCKCC is approved for EPA and R-401A refrigerant certification. This program requires 44 credits in order to be completed and costs around $6,000. This program also provides hands-on learning to help students implement theories in their daily lives and future careers.
Johnson County Community College
Johnson County Community College is located in Overland Park, Kansas and is one of the state’s largest schools for higher education with over 46,000 students currently enrolled. Johnson Community College offers various undergraduate programs and 150 career and certificate programs that prepare students to enter their future careers upon completion. With strong values that include integrity, collaboration, responsiveness and leadership, JCCC is a great place to earn a degree or certificate at while learning through educational excellence and innovation. JCCC offers a nationally accredited certificate program in HVAC with an accreditation from the Partnership for Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigeration Accreditation (PAHRA). JCCC offers to programs which include Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Technology, AAS and a Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning Technology Certificate. The total cost to obtain an HVAC degree or certificate in JCCC ranges from about $3,000 to about $5,000 with scholarships available to apply for.
Fort Scott Community College
Established in 1919 in Fort Scott, Kansas, Fort Scott Community College has satellite locations in other cities providing two-year degree programs and certificates. FSCC is one of the oldest colleges in Kansas providing higher education and is a private, non-profit institution. The college offers more than 40 different academic fields of study. One can transfer to a four-year degree college or university with credits earned at FSCC upon the completion of their degree. FSCC calls for togetherness and diversity and takes pride in its cultural background and various cultural events that take place all year long. The HVAC program at Fort Scott Community college is supervised by an advisory board consisting of industry representatives and instructors that help students succeed in their college careers. The program consists of learning about the electrical and mechanical systems involved with HVAC and refrigeration and hands-on training in the field of study. Students are ready to obtain an EPA certificate after completing their field of study. The cost for attending FSCC for this particular program is about $5,000.
Northwest Kansas Technical College
Northwest Kansas Technical College is located in Goodland, Kansas and also offers two-year degrees to students. NKTC or ‘Northwest Tech’ takes pride in being a school that provides quality learning for its students by maintaining small sized classes and faculty and staff that are willing to help students with every step of the way. Northwest Tech is concerned with providing affordable education to students and has work-study programs that help students work while seeking a degree or certificate program. Northwest Tech provides an Electrical Training program that teaches students to apply the theory of electrical technology and perform installation of electrical equipment and materials in residential, industrial and commercial locations. The program costs about $5,000 to attend. The program length is two years long which allows a student to receive an Associate of Applied Science or technical certificate upon completion.
Manhattan Area Technical College
Founded in 1965 in Manhattan, Kansas, Manhattan Area Technical College offers 8 different Associate Degree programs and several technical certificate programs to students. It received the Aspen Prize for community college excellence and was ranked among the top 150 community colleges in the United States and the second-best college in Kansas. Manhattan Area Technical College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission. Programs at the college merge hands-on working with in-class course learning to encourage critical thinking, problem solving and communication skills for students. Manhattan Tech helps students receive “the skills to pay the bills”. The college offers an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration program that lasts for nine months and costs about $7,000 for a technical certificate and about $11,000 for an Associate’s degree. A student can earn an EPA Refrigerant Handling Certification after completing this course.
Salina Area Technical College
Also accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, Salina Area Technical College, which is located in Salina, Kansas was ranked as the number one college in Kansas for student success by the Kansas Board of Regents Students Success. All programs at Salina Tech last between 9 to 18 months with ‘real world ‘experience that makes students ready for their future careers. Most instructors come from the industrial field and are able to assist students with acquiring the skills they need to succeed. The HVAC program at Salina Tech lasts for 9 months and upon graduation students will be ready to work as entry level HVAC technicians. The program offers a wide range of courses that range from HVAC fundamentals and safety, to compressor controls and troubleshooting. The total cost for this course is about $5,000.
North Central Kansas Technical College
North Central Kansas Technical College takes pride in offering students intensive career-training programs that ready students for their future careers in the fields of their preference. It is accredited by the Kansas Board of Regents and the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and offers 24 different programs. The school offers convenient housing and meal plans for students as well as financial aid. North Central Kansas Technical College provides a certificate program in Plumbing, Heating and Air-Conditioning that prepares students to pursue entry-level careers in those industries right after graduation. Internship opportunities are available with local employers and upon completion of the one year program, students should be prepared to sit for the journeyman license and industry competency examination.
Job Market Growth in Kansas for HVAC
About 70% of Kansas jobs are in the technical field. This is due to the fact that Kansas is a huge and thriving agricultural state which means that it needs numerous factories and buildings to keep the agricultural industry operating at full capacity. Without HVAC technicians, these factories and buildings would not operate as well. Therefore, HVAC technicians are of a crucial need especially in Kansas where small businesses are only growing larger. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that by 2022, the HVAC job market will grow by more than 20%, far higher than many other occupations. Therefore, the HVAC industry in Kansas as well as the rest of the United States is currently in good shape and is estimated to only get better in the upcoming years. That makes it a great field to dive into as HVAC technicians are needed everywhere.
HVAC Wages in Kansas
HVAC wages in Kansas seem to be pretty good at the moment and are only expected to get better. On average, an HVAC technician in Kansas earns an hourly wage of about $22. They typically range from around $16 and go up to $33. The median salary that HVAC technicians earn annually is about $45,000 which begins at about $33,000 and goes up to $70,000. The breakdown of the earnings according to the experience level of an HAV technician in Kansas is as follows:
Top End HVAC Technician – $33/hr or $70k/yr
Senior HVAC Technician – $27/hr or $56k/yr
Experienced HVAC Technician – $22/hr or $45k/yr
Junior HVAC Technician – $18/hr or $37k/yr
Starting HVAC Technian – $16/hr or $33/yr
Things to Do in Kansas
Strataca is an underground salt mine museum that was established in 2007 in Hutchinson, Kansas. It is built in one of the world’s largest deposits of rock salt and allows one to travel 650 feet beneath the Earth’s surface. It is popular as it is the only one of the 15 United States salt mines that are accessible to tourists. Galleries and exhibits within the museum of Strataca includes The Dark Ride which allows visitors to enter a maze of chambers beyond the museum area to explore various features of the mine environment. It is called The Dark Ride as part of the ride allows attendees to pause for a while in complete darkness. Also in the museum is The Mantrip Gallery which features some ‘mantrips’ or train like vehicles that miners used back in 1980 to transport to and from the mining area. Other galleries within Strataca include The Mining Gallery, The Geology Gallery and The Underground Vaults & Storage Gallery which all have information about Strataca and the mining process.
The Garden of Eden
Samuel Perry Dinsmoor, a civil war veteran, began building this bizarre garden at the age of 62 in 1907 and stopped in 1929 when he went blind. Cryptic sculptures fill this garden which have different meanings about politics, modern civilization, and the Bible that often amaze visitors due to the humor conveyed in the messages that they portray. While Dinsmoor was building the garden, locals tried to kick him out of town not knowing that decades later, the Garden of Eden would become the Grassroot Art Capital of Kansas and a main tourist attraction. It costs $6 for an adult to explore this beautiful and unique work of art and only $1 for children.
Mushroom Rock State Park
This park is the smallest state park in Kansas yet happens to be the coolest in the eyes of many tourists and local visitors. Located in north central Kansas in Smoky hills, Mushroom Rock State Park has become famous for its unusual rocks which have incredible mushroom shapes. The bizarre shapes of the rocks attract tourists from all over the nation. There are two large mushroom-shaped rocks which tourists usually climb and take pictures on, a large shoe rock, and many other rocks with interesting shapes. These rocks are completely natural due to nonuniform erosions and weathering and were not influenced by human design. This is why they are a wonder to many who come to visit these beautiful pieces of Godly art.
Museum of World Treasures
Museums are always a fun place to visit, especially world museums that have all kinds of different cool things on display. The Museum of World Treasures is located in Wichita, Kansas and was established in 2001. It features some of the most amazing and ancient treasures in the world. Some of the most popular artifacts displayed at this museum are dinosaur specimens such as the Tyrannosaurus, Daspletosaurus, and Tylosaurus specimens. Some Egyptian mummies are also displayed from ancient Egypt as well as signatures of the United States’ early presidents. The museum has several exhibits that individuals and families can learn from and entertain throughout. These exhibits carry out the museum’s mission which is “To provide a gateway to the past that educates, entertains and inspires lifelong learning”. It costs about $9 for an adult to enter the museum, about $8 for a senior and $7 for a child. This a great way to spend the day with the family and friends while learning altogether!
Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead
For those of you who plan to move to Kanas with a family, Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead is the perfect place to visit when touring. It is a great place for the entire family to enjoy, especially young children. The Farmstead is located in Overland Park, Kansas and was established in 1978 when it began as a petting zoo. In 1985, the park changed its name to honor police officer Deanna Rose who was the first officer to be killed in the line of duty. The farmstead displays various farm animals, birds of prey, show gardens, butterfly gardens, a nature trail, a Native American display, and a full-scale country schoolhouse. There are also playgrounds, a fishing pond, horse-drawn wagon rides, and pony rides within the park that are perfect for children to enjoy. Not only is the Deanna Rose Children’s Farmstead a great place to take the family to, but it can also be very educational and informative for the children, and for adults too!
With all the HVAC training schools in Kansas, it is simply hard not to find a perfect fit for yourself in terms of career training. Not only is Kansas a great place to learn heating, ventilation and air conditioning skills in, but it is also a great place to work in within the field afterwards. With the beautiful nature and landscape of Kansas and the many things to do there, it makes it a great place to live alone, with friends, or even with family. The future seems bright in Kansas for HVAC technicians, so to all aspiring HVAC technicians, the very best of luck!