Union Plumbers, Fitters, Welders and Service Technicians


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UA VIP JBLM HVAC Class 26 begins training for civilian careers

UA VIP JBLM HVAC Class 26 begins training for civilian careers

Transitioning out of the military can be a challenging and exciting time.

Many wonder how they’ll support their families or maintain quality health insurance after they leave the military, especially in today’s healthcare marketplace.

But the students who just began training in Joint Base Lewis-McChord HVACR Class 26 won’t have to worry. They know they will start learning foundational skills to launch careers in the HVACR industry.

Thanks to the United Association Veterans in Piping (UA VIP) program, the students will be guaranteed a civilian job with health insurance – once they complete their UA VIP training and transition out of the military.

The UA VIP program guarantees participants placement in a UA registered apprenticeship at an agreed-upon location after the military.

For 18 weeks, the students will train alongside an experienced journeyman instructor through a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on training. They will learn basic skills to install, repair and maintain heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. Many will also earn industry-recognized certifications in electrical, recovery and HVAC refrigeration.

UA VIP training is available in welding, HVACR and fire suppression – learning the basics to install, inspect, repair and maintain fire sprinkler systems. UA VIP training takes place at select military bases across the country. Each base has its own specialty:

Training takes place during a service member’s enlistment and is considered part of their military duties.

Transitioning active-duty service members are invited to apply to the UA VIP program during their last six months of military service. Apply by downloading the relevant application for the base you seek.


A great career with health insurance and retirement benefits

Once the students complete their UA VIP training and transition out of the military, they will begin a UA registered apprenticeship at an agreed-upon location. They will earn good union wages while they train and quickly qualify for quality healthcare for their family. They will begin earning a pension and a 401K for their retirement. Their pay increases as they progress through the program and expand their skill set.

Once the students complete their apprenticeship training, they will become journeymen with numerous opportunities for advancement. Some may eventually go into business for themselves. Others will go on to become foremen or superintendents. Some may eventually become certified journeyman instructors, perhaps even teaching in the UA VIP program.

Email and request virtual or in-person program briefings from Joint Base  Lewis-McChord IMCOM.