Professionals from the field provide insight and education on current practices and industry trends.
The AHR Expo (International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition) today released the full schedule for the 2024 AHR Expo Education Program. This year’s program will feature more than 110 free seminars, a robust panel series lineup, new product and technology presentations, professional certifications, and continuing education courses.
“The Education Program has grown into a true complementary asset to the show floor experience,” said Show Manager, Mark Stevens. “Inside exhibitor booths, manufacturers are displaying real solutions to improve the health of the industry, the professional work experience, and to address the shifts in our wider society. As a bridge to the robust activity on the floor and attendee understanding, the education program will offer real discussions about real problems that are shared across the industry. We’re working to connect the varying sectors within our industry to deepen these conversations. By inviting our associations and community leaders to the table, we can spark important conversations that lead to smarter decision-making and customer engagement.”
The AHR Expo Education Program will provide an understanding of real-world application and practice in areas of niche discipline, as well as a broader discussion of topics relating to trends happening currently and on the horizon within the industry. Workforce education and open-form communication are important factors as developments occur across the industry.
“Our manufacturers do a phenomenal job of displaying everything new to the market,” continued Stevens. “All the latest products and technologies, as well as solutions to nearly any issue attendees may encounter in their day-to-day professional HVACR efforts, are there. The education program adds an added layer of understanding and knowledge building that supports what our manufacturers are bringing to market, and how professionals can work together to identify solutions throughout the full project cycle.”
Attendees can expect the program to address a wide variety of topics and are encouraged to explore the full program on the website.
2024 AHR Expo Panel Series:
1. 2024 State of the Industry:
In 2022, the AHR Expo launched a panel discussion among leaders representing every sector of the industry. As the first large event following the pandemic, the panels served as a recalibration of all that was happening across the industry as a result. The response was overwhelmingly positive, and the benefit to the industry led to open communication throughout the remainder of the year. In 2024, Bryan Orr returns to moderate a state-of-the-industry update with leaders from ASHRAE, AHRI, HARDI, NCI, ASHB, etc., regarding the current challenges, opportunities, and forecasts for the year ahead in HVACR. Expected topics include changing regulations, the economic forecast including inflation and tariffs, the green transition, the supply chain, and more.
Speakers on this panel include Dominick Guarino, President & CEO of National Comfort Institute, Inc.; Ginger Scoggins, President, ASHRAE; Greg Walker, CEO of ASHB; Steve Yurek, CEO of AHRI; and Talbot Gee, CEO of HARDI. This panel will be moderated by Bryan Orr of HVAC School.
2. Heat Pumps, Electrification, and the Grid:
This presentation will address how best to deploy heat pumps in retrofit projects while addressing two major barriers to electrification:
- At the building level – how can we electrify without requiring costly upgrades to the building’s electrical infrastructure?
- At the grid level – how do we electrify without stressing the grid by adding load in the peak utility demand periods?
Speakers on this panel include Mark Frankel, Chair of ASHRAE’s TFBD Heat Pump Working Group; Jon Heller, President at Ecotope, Inc.; Rand Conger, Johnson Barrow; and Sean Jarvie, Flow Environmental Systems.
3. AI, Controls and the Future of Technology in HVAC:
This session will discuss the current and future roles of controls technology and artificial intelligence as they relate to HVAC and buildings management. Speakers on this panel include Greg Walker, ASHB; Anto Budiardjo, CEO at Padi.io; Chad Langston, ABB; Charles Pelletier, Vice President, Product Management at Distech Controls; Darryl DeAngelis, Ebtron; and Stephen Holicky, Tridium/Honeywell.
4. Addressing the Workforce Talent Gap through Educational Partnerships:
This session will discuss the impact collaboration with an educational institution can have on fostering a robust workforce. As we face an increasingly declining workforce, HVACR professionals can attune to provide supportive efforts to attract and maintain talent. The following topics will be discussed:
- Proven strategies to establish partnerships between education and industry that make a significant impact on improving HVACR, as well as hiring challenges, financial performance, and new hire retention.
- How to find new talent that operations managers appreciate and are eager to hire.
- How to build a culture that promotes technician retention and improves financial performance.
- Understanding the types of partnership and how they make sense for your organization.
- Realistic expectations and adaptability.
- How and where to start as a professional or company.
Speakers on this panel include Scott Shaw, President & CEO at Lincoln Tech; Alison Neuman, North American Workforce Development Program Manager at Johnson Controls; Brian Feilen, Lincoln Tech; Susan English, Senior Vice President of Career Services & Industry Partnerships at Lincoln Tech; and Jose DeLaPortilla, Senior Manager of Education and Training at Rheem Manufacturing.
5. Regional Updates: Refrigerants, Regulation and More:
As an addition to the program this year, sessions highlighting trends, refrigerant and regulation updates specific to regions, including but not limited to DOE practices, equipment, as well as current and future projections in the region. Sessions in this series include:
- South/Southeast: Chris Forth, Vice President Regulatory, Codes & Environmental Affairs, Ducted Systems at Johnson Controls
- Southwest: Jennifer Butsch, Director, Regulatory Affairs at Copeland
- North/Northeast: James “Jimmy” Abraham, Regulatory Affairs Manager at Bosch
Free Industry Seminars:
The 2024 show will feature more than 110 free sessions led by industry experts. Sessions will range from one to two hours and address some of the industry’s most pressing challenges and exciting opportunities. Attendees are invited to attend general HVACR-related sessions, as well as those specific to professional practice areas.
“The Education Programming is a means to learn trends, tips, and growth strategies for the professional and the business,” said Kimberly Pires, AHR Expo Education Program Director. “Our associations are in tune with what is current in their areas of the industry, and this program is the culmination of full industry learning. Our sessions aim to provide diverse perspectives from every professional and perspective in HVACR. The opportunity for shared insight supports healthy communication and growth within the industry.”
Attendees are encouraged to explore the full program on ahrexpo.com. Additional highlights for the 2024 AHR Expo Free Industry Seminar program include:
- Contractor Marketing Do’s and Don’ts 2024
- A2Ls Are Here; What Happened to A3s?
- How Distributors, Contractors & Homeowners Can Prepare for Low-GWP Refrigerant Transition
- Price Increases, Inflation, the Economy…and What Your Customer Experience Can Do about It
- Exploring HVACR’s Role in Facilities Management
- The Future of Home Services: How AI and Diagnostics Can Contribute to Business Success
- Key Performance Metrics for Energy and Facility Managers
- Building Tomorrow’s Cooling Workforce: Navigating New Technologies and Challenges
- The Future of Home Services: How AI and Diagnostics Can Contribute to Business Success
- The Decarbonization Countdown: What’s in Store for Commercial HVAC Systems
- ACG Building Systems Commissioning Guideline Overview
- Navigating to a Greener Future: How Decarbonization and Innovation is Leading Our Markets
- What You Need to Know – A Closer Look at the Ongoing Implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act Incentives
- Redefining Comfort: Decarbonization’s Impact on the HVAC Industry
- How Distributors are Maintaining Profitability Despite Regulatory Headwinds
AHR Expo attendees have the opportunity to participate in professional development courses through ASHRAE Learning Institute (ALI), as well as short courses/professional development seminars approved for Continuing Education Units (CEUs) that can apply toward maintaining P.E. licensure. Attendees are required to register and pay tuition fees in advance of the show and can do so either on site or by visiting the ASHRAE registration website. Full-day courses account for six earned Professional Development Hours (PDHs)/Learning Units (LUs) or 0.6 CEUs. All half-day courses are awarded three accredited PDHs/AIA LUs. Topics cover a wide range of industry subjects, including the fundamentals of the commissioning process, complying with the requirements of ASHRAE standards, laboratory design basics and beyond, optimizing indoor environments, and more.
New Product Theater Presentations:
Attendees are encouraged to sit in on exhibitor presentations in the New Product Theater. More than 145 presentations lasting approximately 20 minutes each are planned across all three days of the show. These free seminars will provide brief overviews of new product announcements and technologies that can be found in exhibitor booths on the show floor. Attendees are invited to follow up presentations with a visit to the booth for a more in-depth explanation and 1:1 interaction with products and representatives. These sessions are set to take place in special theaters right on the exhibit floor. No fee or registration is required.
This year, two 2024 Innovation Award winners will present, including:
Attendees can view the complete AHR Expo Education Program schedule, including the New Product Theaters, on the AHR Expo website. Additionally, attendees are encouraged to manage their show floor and education program agenda by creating a free MyShowPlanner account and downloading the AHR Expo app.
The 2024 AHR Expo will be held Jan. 22-Jan. 24 at McCormick Place in Chicago, IL. To register for the event, please visit the AHR Expo registration page.
About The AHR Expo:
The AHR Expo is the world’s premier HVACR event, attracting the most comprehensive gathering of industry professionals from around the globe each year. The show provides a unique forum where manufacturers of all sizes and specialties, whether major industry brand or innovative start-up, can come together to share ideas and showcase the future of HVACR technology under one roof. Since 1930, the AHR Expo has remained the industry’s best place for OEMs, engineers, contractors, facility operators, architects, educators and other industry professionals to explore the latest trends and applications and to cultivate mutually beneficial business relationships. The next show, co-sponsored by ASHRAE and AHRI, will be held Jan. 22-Jan. 24 in Chicago, IL, and is held concurrently with ASHRAE’s Winter Conference.
For more information, visit ahrexpo.com and follow @ahrexpo on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook.