Southern Air Apprenticeship Program

At Southern Air, we’re making the investment in the next generation of craft professionals by training our own workforce. Our four year in-house apprenticeship program provides opportunities for our employees to advance in their field by attending hands-on-classes.   You’re in the right place if you want a successful career while furthering your education without debt. Get started on your pathway to a successful career and enroll in our Registered Apprenticeship program by completing an application today!

Eligibility and Requirements: To be a registered apprentice, you must be employed with Southern Air and satisfy the minimum age requirement of 16 years of age (18 in hazardous occupations) to apply for a program.

What is a Registered Apprenticeship?

Registered Apprenticeship programs have met the skilled workforce needs of Virginia industry since 1938. We provide on-the-job training and instruction in the construction industry with a competitive edge. If you’re looking for a position where you can learn new skills, then our apprenticeship program is for you.

How does Registered Apprenticeship benefit individuals?

From day one, apprentices receive a paycheck that is guaranteed to increase as their training progresses. Apprentices also complete a combination of industry-specific classroom education and hands-on career training leading to nationally recognized state certification as a journey person.

How long is our Apprenticeship program?

The length of our apprenticeship program is 4 years. During our program, the apprentice receives both structured on-the-job training and related classroom instruction. For each year of the apprenticeship, the apprentice will normally receive 2,000 hours of on-the-job training and a recommended minimum of 144 hours of related classroom instruction.

Southern Air, Inc. – Apprenticeship Program

Southern Air, Inc. created the ‘Wheels of Learning’ program in 1995, providing hands-on training in a variety of fields including electrical, plumbing, heating and air, and sheet-metal. Students ranging from high school to adults have the opportunity to earn a journeyman’s license in a field of their choosing by attending classes two nights a week using curriculum from the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER). With one of the few programs in the state certified by the Commonwealth of Virginia, Southern Air students are granted a journeyman’s license after completion of 8,000 hours of classroom along with on-the-job training, (no DPOR test required). All eligible applicants for the journeyman tradesman card must also meet all DPOR application requirements in order to receive their license in addition to being a current employee of Southern Air, Inc.

A Registered Apprenticeship receives:

A paycheck: From day one, you’ll earn a paycheck guaranteed to increase over time as you learn new skills. Depending on education and experience, starting pay ranges from $15 – $20 an hour.

Training: As an apprentice, you’ll receive practical on-the-job training in a wide variety of programs including HVAC, Electrical, Plumbing, and Sheet-Metal.

An Education: You will receive hands-on instruction, all paid for by Southern Air.

A Career: Once you complete your apprenticeship, you’ll be on your way to a successful long-term career with a competitive salary and no educational debt.

Nationally recognized state certification as a journey person: When you graduate from our apprenticeship, you’ll be certified and can take your certification anywhere in the U.S.A.

Types of Apprenticeships:

At Southern Air, Inc. the Registered Apprenticeship program encompasses the following highly skilled occupations:

Eligibility and Requirements:
To be a registered apprentice, you must be employed with Southern Air, Inc. and satisfy the minimum age requirement of 16 years of age (18 in hazardous occupations) to apply for the program. Southern Air, Inc. also requires employment qualifications and credentials for the following: education, ability to perform physical requirements for the occupation, proof of age, drug testing and/or background check, and holding a valid driver’s license. Based on the selection method utilized by Southern Air, Inc., further information such as school grades and previous work experience may be requested.

Additional detail can be found at

Get started on your pathway to a successful career and enroll in our Registered Apprenticeship program by applying in the link below.

HVAC technicians work on heating, ventilation, cooling, and refrigeration systems in homes, buildings and facilities of all sizes. By providing a climate controlled environment, these heating and cooling systems make it possible to control indoor temperatures, humidity levels and air quality. Knowing how to operate HVAC systems is a valuable skill, one many companies struggle to fill with experienced technicians.

Southern Air’s HVAC apprenticeship program teaches students installation techniques, troubleshooting and repair methods. We will teach you everything from operating hand tools to more sophisticated tools such as carbon monoxide testers. Furthermore, our program teaches students the importance of conservation, recovery and recycling of refrigerants.

Certified plumbers install and service effective piping systems to transport anything from water and waste to gasses and acids. No comfort system may be more important than efficient plumbing for homes and businesses, making plumbers highly sought after tradespeople. At Southern Air, we can train you to become an invaluable commodity for yourself and your company.

Southern Air’s plumbing apprenticeship program hosts students twice a week for classroom lessons and on-the-job training to meet the hourly requirements set by the NCCER curriculum. Our instructors have extensive field experience and are dedicated to training the next generation of plumbers.

All buildings and homes have electrical systems that must be installed and maintained, making electricians one of the most sought after trades in the nation. It takes certified electricians skilled in reading blueprints, understanding technical designs and knowledgeable with the tools of the trade to satisfy the needs of their clients.

Southern Air’s four year apprenticeship training program teaches electrical apprentices fundamental theory and instruction to earn the status of Electrical Journeyman. This apprenticeship is accredited by both the State of Virginia and U.S. Department of Labor. We utilize the “Wheels of Learning” curriculum developed by the National Center for Construction and Research (NCCER).

Sheet metal technicians layout, fabricate and assemble products made from thin metal sheets, primarily for ducts used in HVAC systems, for installation in construction projects. Southern Air employs dozens of sheet metal workers in Prefabrication Division who operate automated machines, collaborate with CAD and BIM designers and prepare duct work for installation in the field.

Southern Air’s hand-picked instructors come from the sheet metal industry, bringing with them decades of experience to teach the trade to interested students. While there is no journeyman card for sheet metal graduates, our program certifies sheet metal mechanics, allowing them to pursue a profitable career within our company.