Harwood business owner teaches hands-on HVAC training at VC Gonzales Center

Dean Seitz has served as an HVAC instructor at Victoria College’s Gonzales Center for seven years.

Dean Seitz finds it hard to explain why the demand for qualified technicians in the heating, ventilation and air conditioning industry is higher now than ever before.

“I guess a lot of younger people are interested in getting into the computer industry,” Seitz said. “But all these computers they use have to be in an air-conditioned room.”

Seitz, who has been an HVAC instructor at Victoria College’s Gonzales Center for seven years, has owned his own HVAC company, Harwood Heating & Air, for 23 years. He prefers a hands-on approach to teaching his students.

“My Level 4 class built a functioning unit from parts taken from five inoperable units,” Seitz said. “I’ll go by the book, but then I’ll teach them practical stuff they will need when they get out in the field.”

Some of Seitz’s students come into the class already with HVAC jobs. Successful completion of any of the levels of Victoria College’s HVAC classes leads to a National Center for Construction Education & Research (NCCER) certificate, which is an industry-recognized credential.

“The NCCER certificate pulls some weight with employers because it shows someone is committed to learning everything about the profession,” Seitz said. “If I hire someone with an NCCER certificate, I don’t have to start from scratch with them.”

Victoria College will be offering its HVAC Level 1 course this fall in Victoria and Gonzales. The course in Victoria will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 9 p.m., Sept. 28-Feb. 3. The course in Gonzales will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6 to 9 p.m., Sept. 21-Jan. 27.

The cost for the HVAC Level 1 course is $800. Scholarships and financial aid are available. A high school diploma or GED is not required to take the course.

Completion of the Core Curriculum: Introductory Craft Skills course is required before students can enroll in the HVAC Level 1 course. Core Curriculum: Introductory Craft Skills courses will be offered throughout the summer in Gonzales and Victoria.

For more information on Victoria College’s industrial trades courses, call (830) 672-6251 or email