For those that are interested, I was made redundant last year, 10 years of specialisation wiped out by corporate greed and incompetence. The job market for my skills in SA are nil. I decided to try for a new trade, namely Refrigeration and Air Conditioning aka HVAC.
I chose a local training provider who had a good reputation, and which was close to home. The previous company had employed 2 junior techs from this provider and we had employed them successfully for over 1 year which vouched for their capabilities and training. When I originally went to this provider to see about the course I met someone who set alarm bells off, but he insisted that the trainer for HVAC was a genius (and his reputation was as such).
Come the first day of class and guess who is the new trainer? not the genius I was hoping for, but the person who set my alarm bells off in the first place.
Broekskeur is the word. Things are not going well. For starters the facilities at the college are poor. The handbasin has not been cleaned since I first went into the loo (which I tend to do often) on day 1, we are now on day 7. The “textbook” is abysmal, just editing out the spelling mistakes would make it better, although that is not saying much.
Lectures are heavy going. This is a pretty theoretical subject that delves into thermodynamics and physics, with a healthy dose of electrical and plumbing to boot. It’s not that the lecturer does not know his onions, its just that he never gets to his onions, and when he does it is via Kroonstad! I will give him credit for one thing though, he knows his maths.
The buzzword is “Google”, and while I do use a search engine a lot, it does not help if I ask a question and get “Google” as an answer. When I asked my first question on day one I received a lecture about all my personality flaws instead and the instruction to use Google. The problem is, the question I asked then was pertinent to what we learnt last week. Every question we ask may lead us to a lecture about how to run a business, or alternatively be dealt with at the extreme end of a tangent. Things are not going well at all.
At this point I am pretty sure I am too dumb to learn this stuff. I can’t comment on the rest of the class, but at least 4 of us have the mutters, the other 3 people don’t really say very much at all. Is that a good thing or not?
There are 13 days left, and I have no idea how they will go. Probably as badly as the 7 we have gone through already. Exam? I will never pass it. But, if I get one of those lecturer evaluation forms, or college evaluation forms, be rest assured, I will be writing a lot of really pertinent things.
A few weeks later.
I met with two of our classmates and we discussed the “training” and how awful it had been, and how awful the “lecturer” had been. It was not worth the money we spent on it, neither was it any help in even fixing a fridge. I learnt much more during an informal session we set up for ourselves than I did during that month. No wonder there are so many “fly-by-nights” and “bakkie brigades” making a mess in the field and screwing the consumers.
© DRW 2012-2021. Created 13 March 2012