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Graduates from JBLM HVACR Class 23 will soon begin civilian careers

Graduates from JBLM HVACR Class 23 will soon begin civilian careers

The graduates of Joint Base Lewis-McChord HVACR Class 23 have good paying civilian careers to look forward to after they transition out of the military.

It is all thanks to the United Association Veterans in Piping (UA VIP) program, which teaches transitioning active-duty service members foundational career skills in the pipes trades. The Career Skills Program (CSP) prepares military members for UA apprenticeships after the military.

Over the course of 18 weeks, the UA VIP students trained alongside UA-experienced instructors through a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on training. They earned industry recognized certifications that will propel their career progress and put them ahead of their peers. The graduates earned certifications in electrical, recovery and HVAC refrigeration.

Some of the students began the course with no HVACR experience, but by the end of their UA VIP training they had a foundational understanding of how to inspect, install, repair and maintain heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration systems.


A direct path to a good paying UA registered apprenticeship

After they transition out of the military, the UA VIP graduates will go on to join a UA union at an agreed upon location and begin a UA registered apprenticeship program. Some of the locations the graduates have chosen include Austin, Texas; Columbus, Ohio and Seattle.

During their apprenticeship training, the graduates will earn good union wages with progressive pay increases as they advance through the program. They will quickly become eligible for quality healthcare for their family. They will start earning a pension and a 401K for their retirement.

UA VIP graduates enjoy good paying union careers that cannot be outsourced in a field that has a high demand for work. Once they become journeymen, they can start their own businesses, become foremen or go on to become instructors in the UA VIP program. Many will also continue working for union contractors.

The UA VIP program offers training in welding, HVACR and fire sprinkler fitting. Training takes place at select military bases throughout the country. Transitioning active-duty service members become eligible to enroll in the UA VIP program during the last 18 months of service commitment.

Learn more about the welding and HVACR UA VIP programs at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.