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12 Schools to Receive Support to Create and Update Plumbing & HVAC Labs The “Explore The Trades Skills Lab, Built by Ferguson” equipment grants were announced on May 1, 2024, in celebration of National Skilled Trades Day. Twelve schools are the newest recipients of the Skills Lab equipment grants, which are projected to reach over Read more

12 Schools to Receive Support to Create and Update Plumbing & HVAC Labs

The “Explore The Trades Skills Lab, Built by Ferguson” equipment grants were announced on May 1, 2024, in celebration of National Skilled Trades Day.

Twelve schools are the newest recipients of the Skills Lab equipment grants, which are projected to reach over 1,000 students this upcoming school year. This dynamic program has experienced rapid growth since it began in 2021 and has now delivered plumbing and HVAC equipment to 26 schools and over 2,000 students nationwide.

“The national conversation around the importance of the skilled trades and technical education has reached a fever pitch this year,” noted Kate Cinnamo, Executive Director of Explore The Trades. “Trade education programs in communities around the nation are bringing the next generation to these industries. Our partnership with Ferguson has given school districts the opportunity to build skilled trades labs that enable their students to thrive. It’s so encouraging to see students discover the trades, develop a passion for them and know that those skill sets will benefit them in careers after high school graduation.”

“We are proud to partner with Explore The Trades and thrilled to see our shared vision of building a sustainable skilled trades pipeline come to life,” commented Melissa Hazelwood, Director of Social Impact at Ferguson. “With the recent surge of interest in trades careers and the substantial investments in our country’s infrastructure, the need for skilled tradespeople has never bee more apparent. Through our concerted efforts, we are not just providing students with tools; we are laying the foundation for lifelong careers. Our partnership has already impacted thousands of students, and we are excited to continue this journey. We are committed to investing in the next generation.”

Congratulations to the following recipients!

  • Appomattox County High School – HVAC (Virginia)
  • Bemidji High School – HVAC (Minnesota)
  • Callaway High School – HVAC (Georgia)
  • Gateway Regional – HVAC (New Jersey)
  • Ivy Academy – HVAC (Tennessee)
  • Lebanon County Career and Technology Center – Plumbing (Pennsylvania)
  • Mayfair Elementary and Middle School – Plumbing (Pennsylvania)
  • Poplar Bluff Technical Career Center – HVAC (Missouri)
  • Raymore-Peculiar Public School Foundation – HVAC (Missouri)
  • Saginaw Career Complex – HVAC (Michigan)
  • Thomas J. Corcoran High School – HVAC (New York)
  • Woodruff Career and Technical Center – HVAC (Illinois)

 

About Explore The Trades
Founded in 2005, Explore The Trades is committed to bridging the technical talent gap to the service trades of plumbing, heating, cooling, and electrical. The organization is focused on bringing the skilled trades conversation back into the classroom by providing classroom materials and on-demand resources for educators, parents, and students.

As fall turns to winter, it becomes more important to have a cozy home to retreat to on cold days. However, it may become challenging to preserve a respectable home within one’s budget, given the rising cost of power. Thankfully, there are many options available to reduce heating costs. Here we’ll go through five tried-and-true Read more

As fall turns to winter, it becomes more important to have a cozy home to retreat to on cold days. However, it may become challenging to preserve a respectable home within one’s budget, given the rising cost of power. Thankfully, there are many options available to reduce heating costs. Here we’ll go through five tried-and-true methods for accomplishing this objective.

Invest in Proper Insulation

Investing in proper insulation is one of the best methods to save money on heating your home. Lack of proper insulation can cause heat to escape, increasing the workload of your heating system. The insulation in your home’s walls, ceiling, and floors should be checked first. Invest in better insulating materials if the current ones are inadequate or damaged. Additionally, ensure that all cracks and openings in windows and doors are sealed. The long-term savings on heating costs from this initial expenditure can be substantial.

Schedule Regular Maintenance

Keeping up with routine maintenance on your heating system is essential to keeping it running smoothly and efficiently. System efficiency decreases with neglect, which in turn increases energy consumption and costs. Get a professional to tune up your furnace to keep it in tip-top shape. They are able to check and clean parts, change filters, and find any problems. Preventing malfunctions and maximizing efficiency can save you a lot of money throughout the life of your system if you maintain it regularly.

Upgrade to Energy-Efficient Heating Systems

An upgrade could be in order if your current heating system is somewhat old. The energy costs associated with heating your home can be greatly reduced by installing a state-of-the-art heating system. You should think about upgrading to a modern, more energy-efficient heating system. Heat pumps and radiant heating are two alternative heating methods worth looking into because of their low energy use. Despite a greater purchase price, this option will prove to be cost-effective over time.

Implement a Programmable Thermostat

You may have greater precision over the temperature in your home by using a programmable thermostat. When you’re not there or asleep, you may set the thermostat to a cooler setting, and when you need it, you can turn it up. When the weather is mild, it’s unnecessary to have the heat on, therefore this helps save electricity. Smart thermostats can optimize energy use by learning your habits and adjusting themselves accordingly. By turning down the heat when it’s not needed, the savings from using a programmable thermostat can be substantial.

Practice Energy-Efficient Habits

A significant reduction in your heating costs may also result from simple lifestyle adjustments. Keeping doors and windows closed when the heat is on, using curtains or blinds to trap heat, and dressing in layers to be warm indoors are all easy ways to reduce your heating needs. Leave the oven door open after you’re done cooking to allow the leftover heat to warm the room. You can save a lot of money in the long run by making these minor adjustments.

Endnote

It is not only conceivable, but also practical, to reduce the cost of heating your home. You can keep your house toasty and warm without breaking the bank if you put money into good insulation, upgrade to energy-efficient heating systems, use a programmable thermostat, adopt energy-efficient practices, and schedule routine maintenance. Your heating costs will go down and your home will be more eco-friendly and sustainable as a result of taking these measures.

Falls Church, Va. — Proving the value of constructive collaboration, Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC) leaders and the association’s industry partners and major sponsors exchanged ideas and solutions for mutual benefit during PHCC’s Industry Summit in Dallas, Texas, last month. The Summit – a chance to make a meaningful impact on issues and opportunities facing plumbing and HVACR Read more

Falls Church, Va. — Proving the value of constructive collaboration, Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC) leaders and the association’s industry partners and major sponsors exchanged ideas and solutions for mutual benefit during PHCC’s Industry Summit in Dallas, Texas, last month. The Summit – a chance to make a meaningful impact on issues and opportunities facing plumbing and HVACR contractors and the industry – was hosted by Rheem Manufacturing, a PHCC Corporate Partner.

PHCC Industry Summit, plumbing, HVAC, heating, cooling

“I learned early on that constructive collaboration was essential for success,” PHCC—National President Dave Frame told attendees at the Summit. “By exchanging ideas, learning from each other, and establishing new relationships, we can further our mission of advancing the industry not only for our own organizations but also to protect public health, safety, and the environment.”

Indeed, the group of industry leaders spent the day exploring ways to better collaborate on crucial industry initiatives, namely regulatory issues, advocacy, workforce development, education and training, and sustainability.

Regulatory updates—particularly trends in decarbonization/electrification – were a key takeaway for Summit participants. PHCC—National Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Chuck White led a discussion on how PHCC and its industry partners can work together to ensure that contractors and their employees have the information they need to effectively advocate for reasonable regulatory mandates and prepare for upcoming changes. “The complexity of regulations impacting our industry amplifies the need for collaboration on advocacy efforts and to establish effective communication channels to keep industry professionals informed to ensure compliance,” he said.

During the Summit, attendees discussed how to set contractors up with financing options for customers interested in purchasing new HVAC equipment. Other topics addressed included how manufacturers can help develop information on heat pump water heaters (the benefits of new products, when to expect return on investment, etc.) for contractors to pass on to customers, as well as how they can improve hands-on training opportunities through PHCC state and local chapters.

In the area of workforce development, several PHCC partners and sponsors shared some transformative efforts, including supporting an apprentice program for at-risk female high school students, working directly with school guidance counselors to promote the trades, and more. “While workforce challenges are not new to this industry, it remains the number one concern for PHCC members,” said PHCC Vice President of Business Development Elicia Magruder. “PHCC and the PHCC Educational Foundation have numerous resources available to help our chapters and members promote careers in the trades, but we still need to do more to ensure a continuous pipeline of skilled workers.”

Of the event, Rheem Vice President of Residential AC Randy Roberts said, “Manufacturers can’t be successful unless we hear and respond to the challenges and needs of our customers. PHCC’s Industry Summit took that up a level, allowing us to engage with contractors, suppliers, and other manufacturers to focus on the current issues our customer base is experiencing and identify how we can all help each other to support and advance our industry.”

PHCC already is building on the energy and commitment exhibited during the Summit, moving to implement many of the solutions discussed as well as making arrangements for its next Industry Summit. “The ideas shared serve as a strong foundation for future collaboration among PHCC, the PHCC Educational Foundation, and our industry partners,” said Frame. “By working together, we can address industry challenges, foster growth, and ensure a prosperous future for the plumbing and HVACR industry.”

Falls Church, Va. — The Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC) Educational Foundation is proud to announce the six plumbing students who received top honors in the plumbing competition during the annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, held June 22nd and 23rd in Atlanta, Ga. Members from the Foundation’s Plumbing Apprentice and Journeyman Training Committee serve Read more

Falls Church, Va. — The Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC) Educational Foundation is proud to announce the six plumbing students who received top honors in the plumbing competition during the annual SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference, held June 22nd and 23rd in Atlanta, Ga.

Members from the Foundation’s Plumbing Apprentice and Journeyman Training Committee serve on the SkillsUSA Plumbing Technical Committee. Committee members were on hand to set up, run. and assist with contest judging.

PHCC, plumbing, heating, cooling, HVAC, The Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC) Educational Foundation

The PHCC Educational Foundation partners with SkillsUSA to sponsor the plumbing contest each year. The Foundation also supports the HVACR Contest. The SkillsUSA Championships is the nation’s largest hands-on workforce development event for middle school, high school, and college/post-secondary students enrolled in career and technical education programs. The SkillsUSA Championships occupy 1.79 million sq. ft. (31 football fields or 41 acres) of floor space. More than 6,000 students competed in 110 contests.

The Plumbing Contest winners were:

  • 1st Place Secondary – Shadrach Roundy, Davis Technical College, Kaysville, Utah
  • 1st Place Post-Secondary – Christopher Hayes, Pinellas Technical College, St. Petersburg, Fla.
  • 2nd Place Secondary – Nicholas Gerasimov, Shawsheen Valley Technical High School, Billerica, Mass.
  • 2nd Place Post-Secondary – Brent Offenberger, Rowan Cabarrus Community College, Salisbury, N.C.
  • 3rd Place Secondary – Benjamin Tuck, Putnam Career & Technical Center, Eleanor, W.Va.
  • 3rd Place Post-Secondary – Chris Martinez, Texas State Technical College – West, Brownwood, Texas

“The PHCC Educational Foundation is dedicated to improving the industry by helping students in

the plumbing, heating and cooling fields reach their full potential. The SkillsUSA Championships

competitions are an outstanding example of the professionalism that results when industry is joined with education,” said PHCC Educational Foundation CLO, Angela Collins.

Technical committee members for this year’s event included:

  • Robert Hahn, Chair, Eastwick College, HoHoKus School of Trades, Union, N.J. (plumbing)
  • Dale Powell, Project Manager, PHCC Educational Foundation, Gettysburg, Pa. (plumbing)
  • Danny Crigler, III, L & D Coates Inc., Aroda, Va. (plumbing)
  • Roman Grier, Viega, Broomfield, Colo., (plumbing)
  • Victor Hatcher, Tyler Pipe and Coupling, Tyler, Texas (plumbing)
  • Warren Lupson, Lupson Assoc., Silver Spring, Md. (HVACR)
  • Harold Moret, Copper Development Association, McLean, Va. (plumbing)
  • John Mullen, International Association of Plumbing & Mechanical Officials, Ontario, Calif. (plumbing)
  • Patrick Peterson, TOTO, Morrow, Ga. (plumbing)
  • Larry Shoemaker, Deluxe Plumbing & Heating, Bethlehem, Pa. (plumbing)
  • Jeff Voss, Jeff’s Plumbing and Repair, Boone, N.C. (plumbing)
  • Jamie Simpson, Schaal Heating & Cooling, Des Moines, Iowa (HVACR)
  • James Walls, Cast Iron Soil Pipe Institute, Garland, Texas (plumbing)

Hiller Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical (Hiller), the region’s premier provider of residential and commercial service and repair, is proud to announce a three-year, multi-faceted partnership with Middle Tennessee State University Athletics (MTSU). Middle Tennessee State University, originally founded in 1911 as a two-year program for teachers as Middle Tennessee State Normal School, was designated Read more

Hiller Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical (Hiller), the region’s premier provider of residential and commercial service and repair, is proud to announce a three-year, multi-faceted partnership with Middle Tennessee State University Athletics (MTSU).

Middle Tennessee State University, originally founded in 1911 as a two-year program for teachers as Middle Tennessee State Normal School, was designated as a four-year state college in 1943 by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, and advanced to university status in 1965. MTSU has since graduated over 149,000 students, offering over 300 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. MTSU has grown into an academic city sprawling across 500 acres and, in recent years, invested over $1.4B in campus improvements.

MTSU strives to foster a student-centered environment conducive to lifelong learning, personal development, and success, as well as promoting ongoing engagement with alumni, partners, and friends. A large part of fulfilling these missions is through its athletic department and corporate partnerships, like this new relationship with Hiller.

Hiller’s founder and the company’s namesake, Jimmy Hiller, is a native to the Greater Nashville area, who has developed the company alongside its local cities. Rutherford County has been a central and growing service area for Hiller for more than 15 years, with Hiller opening its third individual branch in Murfreesboro in 2007. For Hiller, a partnership of this magnitude with MTSU, who contributes so much to the local economy, infrastructure, and community at large, makes perfect sense.

“We are extremely excited and proud to partner with Middle Tennessee State University”, remarked Jimmy Hiller. “At Hiller, we attribute our growth to caring for the communities that we serve. MTSU provides so much support, infrastructure, camaraderie, and resources to the Murfreesboro community, so partnering with them is extremely meaningful to us. We have been fortunate to have seen the impacts of their efforts”, he continued, “Through our previous partnership with the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center, and we look so forward to expanding our involvement across other facets of this incredible institution.”

Lee De Leon, Deputy Athletic Director for External Affairs at Middle Tennessee State University, echoed these sentiments. “MTSU Athletics is thrilled to welcome Hiller Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electrical as a corporate partner. We look forward to a wonderful relationship”, he continued, “And know that MTSU fans will love their ‘Happy You’ll Be’ guarantee”.

Launched in 1990 with a single employee and just $500, Hiller has grown exponentially across the past three decades. Today, Hiller includes over 800 associates and 600 trucks across 16 locations and has responded to over 1.7M service calls across 7 states.