A Career in Commercial Refrigeration: Limitless Opportunities
Nearly every industry and commercial operation relies on refrigeration technology, creating nearly unlimited demand for technicians. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects jobs in refrigeration to grow by 14 percent through 2024, and Minnesota’s Department of Employment & Economic Development has labeled the field as a five-star in-demand career state-wide. Northwest Technical College can help you enter this exciting field, which promises job security and career advancement opportunities long into the future.
Here are some answers to questions you may have about this career field.
What is a Refrigeration Technician?
Walk into any restaurant, grocery store or convenience store and you will see a wide variety of refrigeration equipment in use — and all of it requires the skill of a commercial refrigeration technician to keep everything running smoothly. As a commercial refrigeration technician, you’ll be responsible for installing, repairing, maintaining and replacing the equipment that is vital to the everyday success of hundreds of businesses. In addition to working side-by-side with other skilled professionals to install this equipment, you’ll also learn how to troubleshoot and diagnose problems in these complex systems — and learn the skills you need to get it all running at peak efficiency again.
Where Do Refrigeration Technicians Work?
Everywhere. Commercial refrigeration techs can be a dedicated employee for a company with refrigeration needs, or work as a field technician for a refrigeration contractor. Techs who work as dedicated employees service all aspects of their company’s refrigeration equipment, and work will vary depending on the company’s needs. Field technicians provide services to a broad variety of clients, and may make regular trips to multiple job sites. You can expect to work on a variety of different equipment in a variety of environments. You may spend one day installing a new system in one location and the next day making three repair visits. Every day will bring new challenges and new opportunities to demonstrate your expertise.
What Skills Will You Need to Succeed?
NTC’s partners in business and industry have told us they want employees who have a combination of technical skills and the skills necessary to be successful, professional employees. You’ll develop all of these important skills through your classroom work, hands-on lab experience, and internship opportunities available to you in our Commercial Refrigeration & HVAC program. Some of those skills include:
- Excellent communication and customer service skills
- Strong technological, computer and diagnostic skills
- Understanding how an entire refrigeration unit operates
- Knowledge of and proper use of tools
- Knowledge and understanding of government regulations
- Reading blueprints
- Identifying potential safety hazards
Will I Get a Job?
In short, your job outlook is excellent — there are currently not enough qualified technicians to fill available openings in Minnesota, and as a commercial refrigeration technician your skills will be in demand well into the future. Minnesota’s Department of Employment & Economic Development has labeled the field of Heating, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers as a five-star, in-demand career and estimates that there could be more than 4,750 jobs for technicians in Minnesota in the next 10 years — both new positions and replacement of departing employees.
At Northwest Technical College you’ll learn this profession from outstanding faculty with decades of experience working in some of the world’s most complex environments. Want to know what it takes to refrigerate everything in an Major League Baseball stadium? We can show you. Plus, you’ll practice your skills in a brand-new, 8,000-square-foot lab with $500,000 in cutting-edge equipment. Our relationship with nearby Bemidji State University means you can get a college experience with housing, access to student clubs, organizations and intramural sports, facilities and outstanding student support services. It’s the NTC advantage, and it’s your guarantee for success.
- Small class sizes
- Learn from true experts in the refrigeration field
- Intensive, hands-on training with 4 hours in labs for every 1 hour of lectures
Take your first step toward success as a commercial refrigeration technician. Contact Northwest Technical College today and learn more about this exciting career.