HVAC program expanding into commercial training

EXPANDED EDUCATION — Mark Mangficio, program director & instructor, Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, and Heating instructs WVNCC student Mike Bibbee on a refrigeration systems trainer. -- Contributed

WHEELING — One of West Virginia Northern Community College’s programs will be expanding after receiving a $16,000 grant from the college Foundation.

WVNCC’s Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Program will increase its focus on commercial training, adding to the existing residential training. The grant will be used to purchase new equipment for the program, including a roof top commercial unit, a new commerical gas furnace and commercial heat pumps.

The program also upgraded technology for both residential and commercial training.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in the HVAC field is projected to grow 15 percent within the next eight years.

“We keep hearing from area businesses in the Ohio Valley that there is a high demand for an increase in skilled commercial HVAC technicians,” commented WVNCC Vice President of Economic and Workforce Development Larry Tackett. “We are fortunate, with the generous help from our Foundation, to meet that demand. Additionally, commercial-trained workers often lead to better paying jobs for our students.”

The Foundation, in collaboration with Northern’s Office of Development, secures private financial support for the college.

Joe Eddy, president of the WVNCC Foundation added, “We are proud that we were able to support this new endeavor by the college to fill a growing need in our region and to help secure a better future for our students.”

In addition to HVAC specific training, students in the program receive training in welding, electric, plumbing, sheet metal, duct fabrication and more.

“Our program offers broad-based training for so many different areas and fields, said Mark Mangficio, program director & instructor, Refrigeration, Air Conditioning, and Heating. “The great thing about this profession is that no matter where you may end up in the future, there is always a need for an HVAC technician.”