Central Louisiana Technical Community College (CLTCC) was recently awarded a $65,000 grant to train CLTCC instructors how to install and service Variant Refrigerant Flow (VRF) technology for Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems.
This is CLTCC’s second Workforce Opportunity Grant from The Rapides Foundation. The purpose is to encourage and facilitate partnerships between higher education institutions and businesses in order to provide training for above-median income jobs in Central Louisiana for which there is unmet employer demand.
“This type of grant funding increases our capacity to train the local workforce and offer programs that address the needs of local employers, resulting in programs being better aligned with industry, while exposing our students to local employers,” said Jimmy Sawtelle, Chancellor of CLTCC. “We appreciate this funding, and The Rapides Foundation’s commitment to increase the knowledge and skills of Cenla residents.”
CLTCC is partnering with ACA Mechanical and Industrial Company, an HVAC service provider in Alexandria. Once instructors at CLTCC are fully trained and certified in VRF, they will train a cohort of 10 ACA technicians, which will help meet ACA’s training and education needs. From there, CLTCC plans to incorporate VRF into its existing HVAC curriculum on the credit and non-credit side.
VRF is a relatively new HVAC technology with several benefits, including simultaneous heating and cooling, separate settings for personalized comfort, quiet operation, smaller space requirements, reduced maintenance, and minimal energy usage. Developed in Japan by Daikin, VRF is gaining popularity in commercial and residential use.
“Traditionally, we have used balanced air flow, which always needs to be re-conditioned to meet comfort levels,” said Robert Taylor, ACA Application and Design Specialist. “VRF technology uses the properties of refrigeration flow to produce the most efficient outcomes for comfort within conditioned environments. It delivers precise comfort without re-conditioning the air, and lowers electric costs while meeting diverse comfort requirements within the conditioned space.”
CLTCC’s HVAC instructors will be trained on Daikin and Mitsubishi training modules.
The grant is for a period of 12 months with a final report due to The Rapides Foundation in November 2016.