Maui certification program taps into the red-hot field of air conditioning

Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 4:44 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 30, 2021 at 1:21 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawaii Maui College is tapping into the red-hot field of air conditioning installation, maintenance and repair.

The Ka Holu HVAC program takes participants all the way through their certifications.

“This is for anybody that may be mid-career or starting a new career. They don’t have to enroll in a complete degree program. They can just come and take this type of training,” said Nicolette van der Lee, program manager for Hana Career Pathways.

Maui College met with employers to find out what they needed. AC techs topped the list. Grants and donations cover tuition, supplies and certification fees.

The program even helps connect graduates with apprenticeships.

“Right after I got my certification then that’s when I got my call,” graduate Kaz Kahoohanohano said. “I was like, ‘It’s happening.’ I was nervous but excited,’” he said.

Maui college has held several HVAC sessions. More than 60 people completed the program and got certified.

“That makes them really valuable to employers and helps them jump start new careers,” van der Lee said.

The online course is available to qualifying residents throughout the state.

“It’s a really good program. They’re really good people,” Kahoohanohano said.

Ka Holu coordinates the hands-on part of the training and even helps with job placement.

“We work closely with employers to be able to connect our students with job openings as they become available,” van der Lee said.

The program is now expanding to include training for nurse aids and pharmacy technicians.

To learn more about it, click here.

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