Proper training is essential to building a knowledgeable team of refrigeration technicians, and "Refrigeration Mentor" Trevor Matthews is one of the leaders in the mission to bring quality compressor training to technicians across North America and globally.
Refrigeration Mentor is a global training and development organization that is dedicated to training, educating, and mentoring refrigeration professionals throughout the industry. Matthews's focus is on HVAC refrigeration and carbon dioxide (CO2) refrigeration for supermarket systems. Based in Brantford, Ontario, Canada, his goal is to become one of the world's top trainers in CO2 refrigeration.
Global ExperienceMatthews's refrigeration journey began in 2004. His first interest was in business administration, but he found employment prospects to be limited following college. While waiting in line to sign up for new courses, Matthews struck up a conversation with a refrigeration student, who told him about the benefits of becoming a refrigeration technician, including the potential for travel and good wages. Matthews took the advice, signed up for some courses, and began the process of learning, then work as an apprenticeship, followed by positions with commercial refrigeration and HVAC companies in Canada and overseas.His teaching has taken him across Western Australia and Canada, and includes having served as a national trainer for Emerson Copeland
Trevor completed his Red Seal in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning from Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) and earned a Gas Fitter Journeyman Certificate from Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT).
Developing Tech Team Expertise
Matthews launched "Refrigeration Mentor" virtual training in September 2021, and has been focused on working with refrigeration and HVAC contractors, to help them develop their tech teams. He says he has been learning much himself about how best to educate, teach and mentor other refrigeration professionals all over North America using virtual online methods, including podcasting.
"Understanding how to teach and develop in a virtual setting was very challenging at first, but by changing my approach and attitude I was able to increase engagement and participation," Matthews says, and he adds that he wants to continue to support other trainers and their missions to help apprentices and students by sharing my skills and knowledge from different videos, podcasts and webinars he has created.
"I've helped many of them advance their technicians skills and knowledge on CO2 refrigeration, commercial and supermarket refrigeration, and system and compressor troubleshooting learning programs.Refrigeration Mentor offers free and fee-based training, which can be found at www.refrigerationmentor.com.Training is offered as courses for individual technicians or customizable packages for contractors. The technician courses focus on increasing confidence in the field through technical skills and abilities, becoming more efficient and effective on calls, insights into troubleshooting and learning where to find the specific information techs
Contractor packages have the same key outcomes with support for service managers, key feedback and discussion around learning outcomes specific to each company. These learning opportunities can increase revenue and reduce costs through fewer calls backs, unnecessary warranty issues, efficiency on the job and a reduced employee turnover rate.
"Our goal is to help set up and facilitate mentorship within companies, organizations, or encourage individual partnerships. To build relationships that will bring more confidence, personal and professional growth, and shared knowledge through the refrigeration industry," Matthews explains on the Refrigeration Mentor website.
Information on upcoming programs and webinars that trainers can share with students, as well as other refrigeration professionals who want to learn more about refrigeration. Find those programs and webinars HERE.
This spring, if there is enough interest, Matthews plans to offer a "train the trainer" program for refrigeration and HVAC professionals, to help instructors and educators develop their skills both technically as well as professionally. Examples of content include, how to get better engagement teaching virtually, building more interactive curriculum, ways to motivate the new learner, and designing high quality presentations, and more.
He is asking trainers to take his Train the Trainer Survey to share which topics they would like to see offered in the spring train the trainer program.