Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanic Foundation, Certificate

Invest in yourself! This foundation program can prepare you for entry into an apprenticeship, where you will gain paid industry experience, while you learn.

Refrigeration student

Program at a glance



Work experience

Clinical/fieldwork placement

Study options


Open to International


Area of study

Trades Foundation


Full-time 30 weeks.

Seat availability

Choose your training date from the program training schedules then call us at 250-370-3550 to confirm seat availability.
Training schedules

The future, today

Start dates vary

The Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanic Trades Foundation program focuses on first year competencies that are common to all of the piping trades. You'll work through common core and refrigeration & air conditioning specialty modules.


Over 30 weeks you will follow a modular training system that begins by developing a wide variety of basic skills and builds on these to develop specialized skills required by industry and related fields.

The Pipe Trades and Refrigeration & Air Conditioning shops are located in the Drysdale Building on the Interurban campus. Our two shops are over 12,000 sq. ft. (1,115 sq. metres) in size.

Hands-on Learning

In the Refrigeration Foundation program, you'll develop the skills and knowledge necessary for initial entry into the Refrigeration & Air Conditioning trade.

You'll be exposed to on-the-job conditions, so come prepared to work in a number of different simulations and environments. Practical projects will usually be done on site either at the college or in co-operation with local industry.

Students will apply and extend their academic knowledge and practical skills during a one-week supervised field practice in an industry setting where they will interact and build relationships with prospective employers and other tradespeople.

Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Competencies

  • Use Safe Work Practices
  • Use Tools and Equipment
  • Organize Work
  • Apply Fundamentals of Refrigeration
  • Apply Electrical Concepts
  • Plan and Install Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems

For more details regarding the Industry Training Program, please review the SkilledTradesBC Accredited Program profiles for Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic.

Future Students

Information sessions

Learn more about Camosun's Trades Foundation programs.

Virtual Trades Information Session

What you'll learn

Current students wanting information about your program, go to student planning in myCamosun.

Industrial refrigeration pipes and gauges and ductwork.

Program outline

For more details, including courses, please see the program outline in the Academic Calendar.

Program outline

What to expect

Located at our Interurban campus, this full-time program is 30 weeks long. Classes are scheduled for five days a week, six hours each day. Your typical day includes theory and lectures in the classroom, with the majority of your time in the shop getting hands-on training. There is an online component for all courses offered within the program.

You'll have the opportunity to work on building mock-ups and operating tools and equipment in real-life situations. By learning how the refrigeration and air conditioning systems operate before you start on installations or repairs, you’ll become a versatile and highly competent trades person.

The Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic Foundation program provides instruction in the theory and practices required to obtain credit for Level 1 apprenticeship in the Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic trade. The program comprises the following core levels:

  1. Trades Common Core
  2. Piping Common Core
  3. Refrigeration Specialty Core

Camosun Plumbing and Pipe Trades logo

Next up: Apprenticeship

As a graduate of the program, you’ll be ready to start employment in the Refrigeration & Air Conditioning field.

Your training in the Foundation program will be consistent with provincial standards for Refrigeration & Air Conditioning core knowledge and credit for completing this program may be applied to a four-year apprenticeship program. As an apprentice, you will continue to build on your skills and gain the practical experience necessary to become fully qualified.

Tuition and fees

Effective from September 1, 2024, to August 31, 2025

Estimated tuition

Tuition estimates are for the entire program.

Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanic Foundation, Certificate

$3,438 (domestic)

Domestic tuition fees vary depending on the individual course fees for the classes you select.

Student fees

In addition to tuition estimates, student fees are calculated based on your enrolment. Refer to: Student Fees.

Financial assistance

You may need to find more than one source of funding to help pay for your education and living costs while attending college. Check out sources of money you don't need to pay back as well as those that need to be repaid.

Financial Aid & Awards 

Curriculum & courses

Admission requirements

One of:

  • C in English 11 *
  • C in ENGL 070  *

And one of:

  • C in Apprenticeship and Workplace Math 11 **
  • COM in MATH 038 **

* If you don't have one of the preferred English requirements, see Admission Requirement Course Alternatives for additional Camosun English alternatives.

** If you don't have one of the preferred Math requirements, the college will accept a "C" or higher in Foundations of Math 11 or Pre-Calculus 11. See Admission Requirement Course Alternatives for additional Camosun Math alternatives.

When you apply you will need to submit proof that you meet the program admission requirements listed above. Where a letter grade is specified, you must have proof of that grade or higher.

For more details, including courses, please see the program outline in the Academic Calendar: Loading...

Start dates vary

Program start and end dates.

Apply today

Missing admission requirements?

You may be able to take an assessment or upgrade with us.

Need help applying?

Find out more on How to Apply or speak to an Admissions Advisor.

Contact us

If you have admissions questions contact the Admissions office.

For questions about the program contact or the Department Chair.

Faculty/staff profile

Darren Vaux

Darren Vaux

Chair, Plumbing and Pipe Trades,
John Drysdale
Full bio

Faculty/staff profile

 Josh Stull

Josh Stull

Program Leader and Instructor, Pipe Trades
John Drysdale
Full bio

Faculty/staff profile


Robert Medwid

Instructor, Plumbing, Pipefitting, Sprinklerfitting Foundation

Refrigeration student

Specialty programs

Camosun offers specialty programs to support trades education for Women and Indigenous people. 

Contact information

Trades Apprenticeship Office

Campus location

Centre for Trades and Technology building (CTEI), room 102

Location link

Interurban Campus



Admissions questions: