Esco Institute Auto Mechanics Review

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Trade careers are more popular than ever, but getting the necessary training is also more complicated than in the old days of the on-the-job training and apprenticeships. Educational institutions have sprung up across the country offering courses to prepare for auto mechanics, electrical, HVAC, plumbing and more - yet it can be difficult for the student to sort out the good schools from the bad. The Esco Institute is part of the Esco Group, a large collection of training programs that specialize in certifications in HVAC. To understand the Esco Institute and other trade colleges, we compare four of the top programs.

What Is The Esco Institute?

The Esco Institute has come about and thrived due to certification requirements in the HVACR industry as well as in other trades such as plumbing or auto mechanics. All technical colleges who want to acquire accreditation must go through a process to ensure they meet certain standards, and Esco was at the forefront of the movement for accreditation. The Esco Institute "trains the trainers" by making sure high quality, modular education programs in HVACR are available to institutions - technical colleges, trade schools, and more - to improve their educational offerings.

Educator Credentialing

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The Esco Institute makes sures that educators, whether singly or in a whole institution, are certified. To do this, the Esco Group offers program accreditation, progressive levels of certification, credentialling for educators and trainers, test proctor qualifying, reports and statistics on HVACR educational processes, modular training packages, and professional development options. The aim of the Esco Institute is to make sure anyone who teaches or trains in the area of HVACR is certified, has the proper credentials, and know the steps to take to become credentialed.

Modular Training

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Although the Esco Institute's focus is on "training the trainers" the Esco Group also offers modular, ready-to-go training packages that can be used in any HVACR classroom setting. These include topics such as Electrical Theory, Residential Heat Loads, and Green Awareness and come in Power Point ready lesson plans, syllabus, and a comprehensive training manual. Course objectives are clearly laid out and the modular training topic makes sure instructors can apply the information directly to classroom teaching.

National HVACR Educators And Trainers Conference

Institute Accreditation

Credentialing Exams

College Description

Pricing And How It Compares

What We Compared

  • Esco Institute
  • J-Tech Institute
  • UEI College
  • Porter and Chester Institute

Esco Institute

Esco has been in the business of helping other trade schools while providing comprehensive instruction manuals to teachers for decades.

Pros

  • Huge variety of training materials
  • Support via company
  • Annual conference
  • Accreditation available
  • Flexible curricula for all educational levels
  • Prep for certification exams
  • Includes auto mechanics HVACR coursework

Cons

  • Not directly available to students
  • Multiple modules necessary for full program
  • Tuition Cost 
  • Recommendation
  • Reputation
  • Certification
  • Program Duration

Esco offers education in modular manuals, either hard copy or DVD. These range in price from around $ to $$.

J-Tech Institute

Jones Technical Institute offers automotive and diesel Occupational Associate degrees as well as commercial truck driving preparation for class "A." Located in Jacksonville, Florida, this program caters to students who want a short but intensive program that covers all the bases for entry into the workforce as an auto mechanic.

Pros

  • Brand new facility
  • Focuses on Auto Mechanics
  • Nice area to live
  • Two-year program
  • Tablet-based learning
  • 300+ toolset received upon graduation
  • 16:1 teacher student ratio
  • Great lab and garage spaces
  • 80,000 square foot campus

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No certification
  • Not a long history
  • Limited to Auto Mechanics
  • Tuition Cost 
  • Recommendation
  • Reputation
  • Certification
  • Program Duration

J-Tech offers tuition and fees, as well as courseware for a two year program for around $$$. The truck driving preparation, including books and fees, is around $ for a much shorter course.

UEI College

UEI is a for-profit, private college that provides technical training as well as career training, with programs ranging from dental hygiene to criminal justice to HVAC. The college has day and evening classes, as well as supplementary online instruction. The campus locations include 13 in California, one in Georgia and one in Arizona.

Pros

  • Plenty of financial aid help
  • Well-organized programs
  • Rapid completion of programs
  • Easy admissions
  • Offers a range of job prep

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Difficult to calcuate actual costs
  • Limited information on website
  • Tuition Cost 
  • Recommendation
  • Reputation
  • Certification
  • Program Duration

As a private college, UEI runs about average, with costs ranging from $$ to $$$  for an 10 to 12 month program. Costs and fees vary depending on the specific program, and shorter programs are less expensive. For the automotive program of 11-months, including fees and cost of living, students will pay in the mid-30s.

Porter and Chester Institute

This college serves students in Connecticut and Massachusetts and prepares them for careers in auto mechanics as well as medical and other hot careers. As a private college, Porter and Chester offers some flexibility in course work and opportunities for quick completion, as well as online and evening classes.

Pros

  • Short duration
  • College is well-established
  • Caters to a specific region
  • Helps with job placement
  • Some in-house tuition assistance
  • Hands-on training for the beginning
  • Accredited program
  • Financial aid assistance available

Cons

  • Financially driven
  • Poor reviews from some employees
  • Expensive
  • Prepares only for entry-level jobs
  • Tuition Cost 
  • Recommendation
  • Reputation
  • Certification
  • Program Duration

Porter and Chester is a private, for-profit college, so yearly tuition runs around $. This total will vary somewhat depending on which program the student chooses. For the automotive program, which lasts a full year, tuition is around $. With housing and fees, the average student pays $$ if receiving federal financial aid and around $$$ without any financial aid.

Conclusion

Today's training in accredited trade schools lets students choose from hundreds of programs and learning options. From modular and self-paced comprenehsive training manuals such as Esco to full, year-long programs with live instruction, the possibilities are endless for carving out a career in the trades. For automotive preparation, we recommend checking our J-Tech. For HVACR, including automotive HVACR topics, we like Esco Institute for its packaged and focused approach.