Humber HVAC students in demand at career fair
March 11, 2019
More than 200 students and alumni of Humber College’s HVAC/R programs visited the third annual HVAC Career Fair at the North campus where they were able to meet representatives from 25 businesses to discuss their future prospects.
Alan Gaunt, professor of heating, air conditioning and refrigeration, Humber College of Applied Technology, said many students reaped immediate benefits by attending.
”Quite a few of my students have interviews lined up for this week and next regarding summer and part-time employment,” said Gaunt, who added that up to 90% of his students have a job or job offer by the time they graduate.
”My first-year students have commented that they did not realize how broad the field was and how many different types of careers there are.
”It was certainly gratifying to be able to personally introduce my top students to our top employers and watch the discussions begin.”
Several of those employers were represented by Humber graduates, including Reliance Home Comfort senior service technician Andre Dyer, who enrolled in the college in 2011.
He said his experience at the college was crucial in helping him build a career and not just find a job.
He said, ”The professors didn’t just talk to us, they made sure we understood, that’s what got me along – that extra time, extra help – so I’m forever grateful for that.”
Dyer had returned to the college with opportunities for students to gain work experience across a range of departments at his company.
”We’re looking for students who want to get that experience and want to have a great start in their HVAC career, and I speak from experience when I say Reliance offers that.”
Humber is one of only two colleges in Ontario that offers a three-year heating, air conditioning & refrigeration technology advanced diploma alongside a two-year technician diploma.
Professor Gaunt said the annual event provides feedback that helps him keep the program relevant and his students in demand.
He said, ”It was an invaluable opportunity for me to talk to employers who have a history of hiring Humber HVAC graduates; we are always pleased to hear suggestions on how we can fine tune our programs to better meet their needs.”
Jim Wood, president of the Ontario Petroleum Transporters and Technicians Association (OPTTA), said, ”It was a great opportunity for our organization to get in front of students and advise them of the opportunities of working with oil fired equipment. It seemed the college thought of everything, right down to the student ambassadors that assisted with the load in and out.
”I always enjoy engaging the students, hopefully they received some benefit from participating, I know we sure did.”
The fair was organized by the college’s Work Placement Services Department, with a host of student volunteers providing support.