We recently attended the JTL National Awards in central London where this national training provider celebrates the best new apprentices, along with the companies that are supporting and encouraging them into the industry.
As an HVAC manufacturer, we have recently engaged JTL to help us with our own national apprentice scheme and one thing that was apparent from the Awards was how much the focus has been on the electrical and plumbing side – and conversely, how little appears to have been done on the Aircon and refrigerant side.
JTL is eager to work on this and we are now in conversation to see how we can encourage more focus on our side of the construction industry.
As a trainer, I am really encouraged by the quality of the engineers we see coming through our courses but I know that there are still others out there who remain unaware of what a tremendous career our industry can offer.
Although much of what we do remains hidden, with people just expecting a comfortable office, gym, school, hotel room, etc, we all know that modern life would simply not function in the same way without effective heating, cooling and ventilation to cope with both the vagaries of the British weather and the build-up of heat from the increasing use of computing and other office equipment.
What we also need to bear in mind is that our sector has a vital role to play in helping the country achieve the highly ambitious energy efficiency and carbon reduction targets that are now legally binding.
It is up to all of us to help promote the adoption of more renewable technologies. It is up to all of us to continue pushing energy efficiency and better controls and both new and existing engineers are right at the heart of this debate.
Seeing what a charity such as JTL can achieve when it works in partnership with businesses, I’m confident that we are on the right track to find, train and support the HVAC engineers of the future that can help us all make a difference.
Ben Bartle-Ross is a trainer at Mitsubishi Electric. If you have any comments on this column of any other training issue contact him by email: Ben.Bartle-Ross@meuk.mee.com.