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One of the toughest staffing challenges for maintenance and engineering managers has been finding entry-level technicians who have the needed skills to perform essential tasks. With the COVID-19 pandemic putting even more pressure on departments to improve HVAC system performance to protect occupant health — especially in K-12 schools — that challenge has become even tougher. Now one one college in Maine is trying to address the issue.
The Maine Community College System, Eastern Maine Community College, and the Maine Indoor Air Quality Council are working together to provide a new HVAC program focused on keeping schools safe and clean from COVID-19, according to News Center Maine.
The courses are fully virtual and open to anyone. The idea came from K-12 school administrators who told the Maine Community College System that they were looking to learn more about airflow in school buildings as it relates to COVID-19.
The two modules on heating, ventilation, and air conditioning will take about four hours to complete. One is for school administrators and one is for school maintenance workers, but officials at EMCC said anyone can take these online courses.
Dan Hounsell is editor of Facility Maintenance Decisions.