Charter College Continues to Innovate: Virtual Simulations in HVAC Program

Charter College is a private, independent institution of higher education that emphasizes a new direction for education. Charter College is not a liberal arts college or university. Instead, it takes the best elements from these respected educational institutions to create a unique and innovative experience that meets our students’ needs.

What Sets Charter College Apart?

As the number of efficient and environmentally sound heating and air conditioning solutions grows, so does the demand for residential, commercial, and industrial climate control systems, mechanics, and installers.

HVAC/R technicians install, maintain, and repair essential temperature control equipment found in today’s homes and businesses. Whatever the climate, wherever the place, there is a need for proficient HVAC/R technicians and installers.

The Charter College HVAC/R training program focuses on the installation, maintenance, and repair of heating, air conditioning, ventilation, and refrigeration systems. By the end of the program, students are well-prepared to seek entry-level employment as an HVAC/R Mechanic.

Our curriculum is offered in a blended format which combines the benefits of online and in-person learning into a program that provides unparalleled flexibility with classes starting every five weeks.

Student and community outcomes are positive, with high satisfaction rates reported from students, employers, and graduates. This speaks volumes about the type of environment and culture we’ve cultivated.

Our students get to experience state-of-the-art training, and our employers get to hire and change student lives across the nation. Charter is where people want to go to school, and trained professionals want to teach.


Ushering in a New Era for HVAC/R Education

Charter College has been in operation for over 35 years. During that time, the College has made numerous changes to remain a leader in career readiness while providing accredited pathways for in-demand training & degree programs.

At the height of Covid-19, Charter College did what it’s always done and pivoted to remain connected and innovative while excelling forward. We reached for technology to expand our already established online and distant learning model. By incorporating Interplay’s simulation training into our thriving HVAC program, we trained nationwide at all five of our locations without skipping a beat.

The addition of Interplay into our blended learning format has brought many positive outcomes to our training program, but here are just a few:


1. It Boosted Teaching Effectiveness

Our HVAC students spend 10 months honing their critical thinking and analytical skills. When they graduate, they leave with the ability to make quick diagnoses when troubleshooting and locating common faults. Online videos and simulations play a key role for our instructors because they reiterate the technical fundamentals taught in the classroom while also providing safe, unlimited virtual practice at home. This creates a bridge between classroom lectures and lab projects, setting the stage for much more effective lab time.

2. It Reinforced Student Safety

Student safety at Charter College is number one. We provide our students with a safe, convenient place to make mistakes and gain job-ready skills before working on real equipment. Interplay’s simulations complement our safety philosophy as students can use technology to practice troubleshooting in a risk-free environment.

3. It Increased Student Engagement

Student engagement is essential for both learning and retention. Today’s younger generations expect technology-based content for education, and Interplay’s simulations look like the interactive video games our students are used to. It’s engaging training that they want to use and return to, fitting perfectly with Charter’s mission to remain connected and innovative.

Overall, Interplay Learning has allowed us to be more versatile and has been an invaluable learning resource for our amazing students.

Whether on the road, at home, or in the classroom, students have access to simulation exercises, videos, and interactive content. Altogether, this enhances learning outcomes and supports our students in pursuing future careers and certifications.


Is there a Charter College location near me?

At Charter College, we understand that enrolling in college is a big commitment. Most of our students juggle busy lives filled with family needs and work obligations. That’s why we make getting a career education flexible and convenient through local campuses, Blended Learning, and online programs like Interplay Learning.

Today, you’ll find Charter College in communities throughout the Western United States. New locations are added as we determine the need for quality, fast-track career education in other cities.

Current trade programs offered at one of our ground facilities include the following areas and states:

Anchorage, AK

Lancaster, CA

Lacey, WA
Pasco, WA
Vancouver, WA


For those who don’t live near one of our sites, we have online programs in health care, IT, business, and the trades.

*Students must meet admissions requirements noted in the Catalog & Student Handbook.


How Can I Visit a Campus Location or Schedule a Tour?

There are several ways to visit our campus locations; it’s up to how you’d like to visit. You can call, walk-in during business hours, or visit us online anytime.

Ever taken a virtual lab tour? Take a self-guided, virtual tour of our HVAC/R lab by clicking the play button below: HVAC Lab Tour!

Learn more about ways to connect with us at



Josh Bicchinella, Program Manager, Charter College

Josh Bicchinella

Program Manager, Charter College

Josh is a Program Manager at Charter College. With over a decade of experience in leadership, Josh strives to provide aspiring technicians and educators with the skills and tools they need to be successful in their HVAC careers.