New Program Recruits, Trains and Employs Workforce of the Future
Largest home services company in North America teams up with a Florida technical college to provide training and jobs.
Sarasota, FL (June 10, 2015) – In a large and bright workshop, huddled around a lab table with compressors and wiring, you’ll find a group of students working to become heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) maintenance technicians. These students are different than others though. Thanks to a new program between the largest home services company in North America and a local technical school, this group is getting the latest industry training in a public school classroom, and when they successfully complete this course, they will be offered a job.
One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating®, part of the Direct Energy family of brands, recently sponsored the One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating Technical Training Center at Suncoast Technical College (formerly known as Sarasota County Technical Institute.) This program is part of a unique partnership between a private company and a public school. The company is fully funding all the tuition, supplies, books and uniforms these students need. In addition, trainers from One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating work with the students regularly and students have access to company training on line to supplement what they’re learning in the classroom.
“It’s been great to partner with an industry leader. We were able to customize the curriculum to meet their needs and it’s exciting to know jobs are waiting for them,” said Chuck Drake, Program Manager for Industrial Education at Suncoast Technical College.
“The trades are in high demand, and people will always need help with their air conditioning and heating. I didn’t want a job that was going to be obsolete in a few years and this was a great opportunity,” said 23-year-old Will Sivils, a student in the program. Another student, 20-year-old Jessica Johnes is a single mother who used to work in shipping and receiving. She said, “I like the hands on learning. This is training me for an interesting job where I can make good money and have a career.”
“There is a critical shortage in the skilled trades industry. We are hiring 2,000 people this year to work in our HVAC, plumbing, electrical and solar businesses,” said Scott Boose, President of Direct Energy Services. “Many don’t realize our technicians work with the latest equipment, have great earnings potential and an opportunity for a good career. We’re committed to recruiting, training and employing people who want to join our team.” adds Boose.
One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning, Benjamin Franklin Plumbing and Mister Sparky electric, all part of the Direct Energy family of brands, recently announced a new partnership with Mike Rowe, the creator and executive producer of CNN’s “Somebody’s Got to Do It” and Discovery Channel’s “Dirty Jobs.” The brands have also committed to donating $100,000 in scholarships to the mikeroweWORKS Foundation and will work with Rowe to promote the skilled trades industry and the people who work in it.
Students in this program are scheduled to graduate in early June. Each will be offered a position at a One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating location in Florida. Recruiting is currently underway for the next class starting in late August.
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For more information contact:
Manager, External Relations
Direct Energy Services