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Tech Graduate Tackles Cool New Career

Oklahoma summers can be brutal, one-hundred-degree heat, scorching sun and if your air conditioner is not working, you are miserable. Graduates of the HVAC/R program at Tulsa Tech, like Shawn Schubert, work hard everyday to help their customers stay cool in summer and warm during winter months.

The nine-month adult program covers everything from safety to how to deal with the electrical systems that run your heating and A/C unit.

"Before coming to Tulsa Tech, I worked as a line cook at a restaurant,” Schubert said. "Tulsa Tech prepared me for the workforce by teaching me all the skills, but most importantly, customer service."

Those professional skills or “soft skills” like communication, problem-solving and teamwork are essential to being successful according to our industry partners. In the HVAC/R world, Schubert uses those skills every day, greeting customers at their home to offer a tune up or helping fix an issue.

“As a service tech for AirCo Service, I meet a lot of customers when something is not working,” Schubert said with a smile. “It’s my job to troubleshoot the situation and get them back up and running."

The need for service technicians is multiplying, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their data shows the need for trained service technicians will grow by nearly 15 percent over the next decade.

Schubert says this new field suits his personality because he is always able to learn new things. That is something he has in common with a former instructor.

“There are no boring days,” Terry Hodges, Tulsa Tech HVAC/R Instructor said with a smile. “Every day brings a new challenge and a new way to practice and perfect a skill."

After 25 years in the field, Hodges says that becoming an instructor was just a way to keep his feet in the field and give back to the next generation. A generation that now includes former students like Schubert setting their sights on moving up.

“My goal is to become a journeyman someday and then maybe a service manager," Schubert said.

A dream that was all made possible because he took a leap of faith to change careers and make his own path.

"I am so glad I decided to go to Tulsa Tech," Schubert said with a smile. "It has changed my life in so many ways. I would not be the person I am today without Tulsa Tech.”

A life that includes helping Oklahomans beat the summertime heat and has Schubert is living out his dream and learning new things each day.

“If you want training to learn a new skill, I strongly advise you to go to Tulsa Tech,” Schubert said. “It will help you change your life.”

You too can follow your dreams to a new career. Start here