Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association
A veteran and trusted expert in the HVAC business, David Williams emphasizes mechanical and electrical theory when teaching service to sheet metal apprentices and journeymen.
“I often tell people that I cannot teach you everything that could possibly happen in the field when you’re on the job,” Williams explains. “But I can help you understand the mechanical and electrical theory behind HVAC so that you have the skills to tackle any problem in front of you. My goal is to teach my students how to think for themselves when they’re on the job.”
David has a lifetime body of work in the AC industry. His father owned an AC business, which motivated David to learn the trade and pursue a career teaching and working in the business. David’s son now runs his father’s AC business, representing the family’s generational dedication to the industry.
Williams finds it easy to stay engaged with teaching in this industry even after 40 years.
“The industry is always changing,” Williams says. “One of the big things about training is that we have to keep up as our equipment and the theory behind it gets more sophisticated. I emphasize theoretical understanding to my students; when you have that, then you can tackle almost any problem in the field.”
While involved on the training and teaching side for over 40 years, David just recently began teaching at the JATC. David’s service class at the JATC emphasizes refrigeration theory, electrical theory, wiring and normal service procedures. With his wealth of knowledge of the trade, Williams has a profound impact on his students.
“The class I teach at the JATC is much different than ones I’ve taught in the past,” Williams explains. “This is mainly due to the students. They are eager to get out of the classroom and learn hands-on, which makes them a really fun group to teach.”
In addition to a theoretical approach, Williams makes sure his students are able to have fun while getting their hands-on training.
“I emphasize having friendly interactions with the students in my class,” Williams says. “I think you need that to build trust and an environment where the students feel comfortable asking questions and being themselves.”
As someone who has worked in the industry for decades, Williams recognizes that the current state of construction and AC work presents unique challenges and opportunities.
“As the industry has changed so dramatically, I’ve been talking to contractors to identify what their needs are,” says Williams. “They need an abundance of skilled workers that can solve complex problems on the job. And they’ve also identified room for union contractors to become involved with residential service.”
While the industry constantly evolves, David Williams will maintain a steadfast commitment to ensuring that today’s apprentices and journeymen are prepared to successfully confront whatever challenges lie ahead.