5 PPATEC graduates enter careers in energy industry

October 12, 2023 By    

Five students in the Pennsylvania Petroleum Association Technical Education Center’s (PPATEC) HVAC & Energy Professional Program will become employees for the 2023-24 heating season.

PPATEC graduate Eric Snyder accepted a position with Suburban Propane. (Photo courtesy of Pennsylvania Petroleum Association)

PPATEC graduate Eric Snyder accepted a position with Suburban Propane. (Photo courtesy of Pennsylvania Petroleum Association)

Graduates include Alex Kreider of Stevens, Benjamin Farber of Annville, Daniel Segundo of Harrisburg, Eric Love of Steelton and Eric Snyder of Hanover. Four of five graduates were recipients of the Robert V. Boltz Scholarship Foundation.

Kreider is a recent high school graduate of Cocalico School District. He entered an HVAC co-op with Vertex Mechanical during his senior year. Kreider accepted a job with Vertex Mechanical prior to attending PPATEC, where he received formalized training and industry-specific certifications. He started the job immediately after graduation.

Benjamin Farber is a military veteran who offset 100 percent of his PPATEC tuition through the GI Bill. Farber entered PPATEC with no direct employer relationships but was able to interview with multiple companies during the 10-week program. He accepted a position with Constant Comfort Solutions and began his new HVAC career soon after graduating.

Daniel Segundo previously had worked two jobs but was in search of better career opportunities in the HVAC and energy industries. Segundo accepted a position with Home Climates and attended the HVAC & Energy Professional Program as an employee of the company. After graduating from the program, he will return to his position with industry-specific training and certifications.

Eric Love had experience in the HVAC field but was most recently working in the commercial sanitation industry. Love used PA CareerLink to sponsor his PPATEC tuition costs and brush up on his HVAC knowledge base. Love interviewed with multiple employers and accepted an offer from HB Home Service Team.

Eric Snyder had worked a warehouse job and wanted to make a career change into the HVAC and energy industry. He interviewed with multiple PA Petroleum Association (PPA) and PPATEC member companies while attending the HVAC & Energy Professional Program. Snyder decided to take a position as an HVAC field technician with Suburban Propane. He also will go on to obtain a CDL through an internal Suburban Propane training program.

PPATEC, an arm of PPA, offers hands-on technical training solutions for the HVAC and energy industry. The PPA is a nonprofit trade association representing 450-plus energy stakeholders. PPATEC is a postsecondary entry-level career training institution licensed by the State Board of Private Licensing Schools and is approved by Veterans Affairs to accept GI Bill benefits.

In 2022, PPATEC launched its HVAC & Energy Professional Program, a 10-week, hands-on curriculum tailored to provide the skills needed to secure a job in the HVAC and energy industry. Graduates of the program routinely receive multiple employment offers, often graduating on a Friday and going into a new career the following Monday.

Pennsylvania has a statewide shortage of more than 2,000 HVAC and energy technicians, jobs with average annual salaries well above $50,000, according to Ted Harris, executive vice president of PPATEC.

PPATEC created its entry-level training program to help PPA members fill that pressing need.

“We’re glad to play a role in preparing these and other young men and women for family-sustaining careers in an in-demand field,” says Harris.

Candidates have multiple opportunities for financial support. Veterans can use GI Bill benefits to defray the cost of the program. PPATEC also offers scholarships. PPA members also have an opportunity to sponsor a candidate entering the program.

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