Energy Technology — Power/Building Engineer Advanced

Program Information

Program Code: 
PWBLD.CERT...
Degree Type: 
Certificate of Achievement
Year Established: 
1990
Contact: 
Industrial Technology - technology@hfcc.edu
Description: 

The Power/Building Engineer Advanced Certificate of Achievement is a one year, four semester program. Students attend a fall and winter semester along with two eight-week spring-summer semesters. Entry into the program may be during any one of the four semesters. Students are encouraged to make an early application, at least one month or earlier, before either a fall or winter semester and to seek advising and counseling prior to entry. Full time or part time students must meet with the Power/Building Engineering faculty advisor or, online students must correspond with the Power/Building Engineering faculty advisor prior to registration to develop an approved plan of work for the program.

This certificate is designed for the prospective entry-level power engineer and those seeking educational credentials or licensing in this field.

This program alone does not qualify a person to take power engineering license exams. However, this program may in some cases offer the capability to gain all of the qualifying educational and/or field experiences toward meeting license exam requirements. Admission to license exams is based upon education and field experience and is granted depending upon each individual’s credentials. Check with your employer or the local license agency involved to ensure you will obtain the required experience and/or the educational background necessary for the license you are seeking or the documentation you require to advance in the profession.

The Power/Building Engineer Advanced Certificate program provides two distinct study options and is designed to prepare students to enter the power plant operation, building and facilities operation and maintenance, and HVAC commercial-industrial operation and maintenance fields. Students may select this to achieve this certificate in a Traditional Classroom - Lab Approach OR Online Approach With Lab and/or Field Experiences.

Option A - Traditional Classroom - Lab Approach Option A provides the traditional classroom-lab approach to completing the program and includes lab and field experiences required by some license agencies.

Option A includes “hands-on” lab and field experiences required to qualify to take exams at various license agencies. All courses from the Phase I - HP Boiler License Prep Program apply toward Option A of this program. Students completing the 34 credits for the program receive a certificate which may be presented to local license agencies to assist in meeting the requirements to take a HP Boiler license exam, NIULPE 4th Class and/or a 3rd Class Refrigeration Operator license exam. In this program students operate boilers, engines, turbines and heating and cooling equipment in the “hands-on” Co-Generation Facility in the Energy Technology Department.

Option B - Online Approach With Lab and/or Field Experiences Option B provides an equivalent approach to completing the program which is up to ninety-five percent online and includes completion of mandatory power engineering labs or field experiences required by some license agencies.

Option B is up to eighty-eight percent (88%) online and includes completion of mandatory power engineering “hands-on” labs or documenting field experiences as required to qualify to take exams at various license agencies. Students completing the 34 credits for the program receive a certificate which (if it includes the required level of “hands-on” lab training and/or field experiences) may be presented to local license agencies to assist in meeting the requirements to take a HP Boiler license exam, NIULPE 4th Class and/or a 3rd Class Refrigeration Operator license exam.

Career Opportunities: 

Student successfully completing this program and passing a steam and/or refrigeration license exam may find employment such as:

  • Building and Facilities Engineers
  • Operating Engineers
  • Stationary Engineers
  • Power Engineers
  • Service industrial machinery, hospital equipment, plumbing fixtures, elevators, and other electrical or mechanical devices used on the premises.
  • Monitor Control Room equipment including troubleshooting
  • Machine/Equipment maintenance and some ‘hands-on’ repair.
  • They also handle all aspects of the job; in others, they are assisted by helpers or maintenance personnel.

These employment positions may be found in steam-electric or cogeneration generating plants, pumping stations, heating plants, air conditioning plants, water treatment facilities, industrial or commercial refrigeration plants and commercial or industrial process plants and buildings.

Students with power field operating experience may advance in the profession by utilizing this program to seek advanced operating positions, management positions or a higher grade of license.

Students completing Option B of this program may find additional employment positions in the Power/Building Engineer field such as in administration, engineering, marketing or sales, and parts or service.

Employment Outlook The Projections of Employment, published by the Labor Market Information projects a 10% increase the number of Facilities Engineers and Stationary Engineers through 2012. The trend toward automated, centralized control of building operations has not reduced the need for Power, Building and Facilities Engineers. When automated systems are installed in older buildings, they often take the place of simpler systems and equipment that had not required the high-level services of Power, Facilities and Building Engineers.

Registry / Certification / Licensure Exam Information: 

Students completing this certificate may have the knowledge to take the NIULPE (National Institute for the Uniform Licensing of Power Engineers) 4th Class License Exam (when approved by the individual state board), and the 3rd, 2nd, 1st or Chief Engineers License Exams on campus or through any one of the 20 + state licensing boards for NIULPE, or if they have the required years of field experience for a specific power engineer license.

Students completing this certificate may also have the knowledge to take the EPA Refrigerant Recovery Exam, and the Refrigeration portions of the NIULPE (National Institute for the Uniform Licensing of Power Engineers) 4th Class License Exam (when approved by the individual state board), 3rd, 2nd, 1st or Chief Engineers License Exams on campus or through any one of the 20 + state licensing boards for NIULPE, if they have the required years of field experience for a specific refrigeration license.

The NIULPE 4th class License Exam and the EPA Refrigerant Recovery Exam are offered as part of this program in ENT 256 (For Option A students) and in PEFT 256 (For Option B Online students who can travel to the campus for the exam session). Students receiving a passing score on these exams will receive certification in these areas.

Program Requirements

Additional Program Requirements: 

Transfer from one Option to an another Option IMPORTANT: Full-time or part-time students must meet with the Power/Building Engineering faculty advisor or, online students must correspond with the Power/Building Engineering faculty advisor prior to registration to develop an approved plan of work for the program. Any changes from the original Plan of Work for a student''s program MUST be approved by a Power Engineering Faculty member BEFORE a change in class enrollment takes place! Specific requirements regarding switching options are as follows:

  1. Option A students may at any time (with an approved plan of work) change to an Option B mode of study usually without significant makeup courses due to the fact that “hands-on” labs-experiences are included with the courses in this option.

    1. Option B students requesting to switch to Option A MUST first establish an approved plan of work with a Power Engineering faculty member BEFORE enrolling in any courses included in the Option A program.
      Additional “hands-on” experiences may need to be added to the student''s program to meet the Option A program lab and experience requirements for completion of that option.
Minimum Number Of Credits To Graduate: 
34 (Including Options/Electives)

Requirements are Subject to Change

The information represented here is for the current catalog year. If you were admitted prior to this year, please check your requirements under the Program Evaluation section of WebAdvisor.