The Official Online Weekly Newspaper of NAHB
QwikProducts, the HVAC/R product division of research and development firm, Mainstream Engineering, on Oct. 20 announced a partnership with the Home Builders Institute (HBI), the workforce development arm of NAHB, in which it will offer specialized residential HVAC and building maintenance training and certification through its website — www.epatest.com — to students in HBI Job Corps programs.
The training is being offered to 200 students enrolled in facilities maintenance trades training — one of eight trades offered at HBI Job Corps programs across the country.
Under contract with the U.S. Department of Labor, HBI operates Job Corps programs in 41 states and provides hands-on training to more than 3,000 at-risk youth.
The training materials from QwikProducts are free online, and the costs of testing, proctoring and certification are being funded by the Labor Department’s National Office of Job Corps through the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Students will participate in the following programs: EPA Section-608 Type I, Preventative Maintenance Tech, Green HVAC/R, Indoor Air Quality and R-410A.
Students are being introduced to the program through a “Score Big With a Big Score” contest promotion available at 19 participating HBI Job Corps programs in 17 states. The highest scoring student on all five training/certification program tests will receive national press recognition and products from QwikProducts.
“This pasrtnership increases awareness with students we might not attract through our conventional HVAC/R channels,” said Ross Soyka, commercial sales and marketing manager for Mainstream Engineering, which recently created its Trade School Division to provide training/certification, products and educational support to HVAC/R trade schools in the U.S.
“The classroom training gives students confidence in their abilities and helps take out the mystique of the hands-on training,” she said. “It’s a win/win situation for Mainstream Engineering, HBI and its students.”
“HBI students who complete these tests and certifications are ultimately more marketable to HVAC/R contractors,” said C.J. Tirone, executive vice president of HBI. “In addition to offering specialized knowledge and skills, an industry-certified new hire saves an employer training time and expense and can begin work immediately.”
For more information, e-mail Nathan Kelly at HBI, or call him at 800-795-7955 x8936.