Darron Febey, AM.AIRAH
Why is HVAC&R important?
Each year it rolls off our tongue as we formally introduce our new apprentice cohorts to our refrigeration/air conditioning industry that serves us well – both personally and professionally.
Comfort, food preservation, process. The opportunities that are available from the air conditioning and refrigeration fields are enormous and ever-growing, though we need to concentrate on being as environmentally sustainable as possible. We know our industry has an impact on our climate through the refrigerants we use and the energy we consume. The energy shown by the youth of today, who are more climate-change aware, means possibilities should be developed for the youth to make a difference in our industry.
What do you do, and what is the most satisfying aspect of your work?
I deliver training for the Certificate III in Air-conditioning and Refrigeration (UEE32211). Due to our student base being smaller, I have the opportunity to deliver the whole qualification to my apprentices from their first year through to their capstone assessment. This is very satisfying, as it allows me to mentor apprentices through their training journey, help them develop problem-solving skills and watch as they prepare themselves to work independently.
I also teach restricted electrical training to plumbers and technicians who can prove a need to disconnect/reconnect as a secondary function to their trade. I find it very satisfying to educate tradespersons who work beside electrical hazards in the electrical principals, identifying electrical potential and how to safely work with electrical conductors.
Plumbers are never really allowed to understand electricity in their chosen trade. They often need to work next to hazards, however, I believe it should be in their trade training, like the P units in the refrigeration qualification.
What will you be doing to celebrate World Refrigeration Day?
We will definitely be spruiking World Refrigeration Day, especially around the campus. All apprentices will be notified of the day so the word can spread, and we can be proud of our industry and its contribution to our society.