How Testo instruments benifit RMIT University
Training up the next generation of refrigeration and air conditioning professionals is a job that Trevor Jenkinson from RMIT University in Melbourne takes very seriously.
With both industries facing skill shortages and technology changes, Mr Jenkinson feels that the university must stay up-to-date with what is occurring in the outside world to prepare students for a successful career.
The university’s Senior Educator for the refrigeration and air conditioning department for the past 10 years, Mr Jenkinson has overseen many changes in his career, but few have made the difference to his students like testo’s range of instruments.
RMIT University started life as a trade college in the late 1800s and quickly become an important part of the Victorian trade industry. In the 1990s, the trade college gained university status and opened its curriculum to other subjects, such as communications and the environment.
However, the university kept its vocational courses such as refrigeration and air conditioning at the top of its agenda. In fact, classes are so full, new teachers have to be trained up on equipment and materials regularly.
RMIT refrigeration school
Teaching a range of students between the ages of 16 and 50, RMIT’s refrigeration school looks at all aspects of the industry. From domestic, commercial and industrial uses to transport and marine sectors.
Mr Jenkinson listed the range of equipment they use to conduct student training.
“We basically have something for every part of the industry. Everything from simulators to a full supermarket, full hotel system, milk vats, anything for pubs, clubs, convenience stores and a chiller for a multi-storey building,” he said.
A former student at RMIT saw the benefits of some of their digital gauges and suggested that the university begin to use them. Since that point, the refrigeration school has used electronic gauges, data loggers, infrared cameras and training courses from testo.
Mr Jenkinson can’t fault the devices at all and said that testo has been a major part of the ongoing success of the school.
“I can’t fault them,” he explained. “Everything that we require they are only too happy to help with. Whether we buy devices off them or whether they come in and retrain our staff with their newer electronic gauges or data loggers, they’re ready and waiting to help.”
Mr Jenkinson pinpointed the fact that the digital gauges can be reprogrammed for a different refrigerant and the ability to get all the super heat settings, sub-cooling and pressures correspond perfectly with the courses and what the school is trying to achieve.
Industry transformation from analogue to digital gauges
Although the digital gauges are slightly more expensive than their analogue counterparts, Mr Jenkinson recognises the benefit to younger students.
“Once they get the hang of the devices, it only takes them two or three minutes to master compared to 10-15 minutes for older generations,” he stated.
“It certainly helps them gather the information a lot quicker than they would using analogue gauges, and it helps them work smarter, not harder.”
Competition in the refrigeration education sector is fierce, but Mr Jenkinson recommends that other institutions work with testo as well.