The Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA) provided certification courses during the conference portion of The International Pool | Spa | Patio Expo, co-located with Deck Expo (PSP/Deck Expo).
Wayne Ivusich, manager, Education & Technical Services at Taylor Technologies, Inc., led the Pool & Spa Operator Certification course, a verifiable pool and spa training credential for aquatic facility maintenance personnel, health officials, retailers, property owners, and other professionals.
CPO certification provides individuals with the basic knowledge, techniques, and skills of pool and spa operations
Students learned how to identify code requirements, recognize the components of a circulation system, identify spa regulations, understand recreational water illness treatment and prevention, identify the cause and treatment of water problems and recognize the unique qualities and care of aquatic play features.
"It covers the whole gamut from water chemistry to filtration, pumps, reporting, risk management, has a little bit of everything all built into it so they get a good nice foundation—and hopefully an appreciation, we hope. of what they do at their facility," Ivusich said.
"A lot of the information that they get from that class, they retain and they actually use because this the CPO course is not necessarily a test of your knowledge," he continued. "But it's their ability to look up information and to take the information and kind of assemble a solution to a problem if they encounter a problem and it's a great resource material.
"So the test itself is actually testing their ability to look up the information. Okay, and answer the questions. And that's an incredible takeaway is knowing that you're able to get an answer for a problem, or at least have a resource to get an answer to a problem," Ivusich concluded.
The Certified Service Technician course, led by Pool Operation Management Owner Trevor Sherwood, provided 24-hours of education for service technicians looking to elevate their knowledge.
The course reviewed common problems regarding pool finishes and examines potential solutions.
Students explored circulation, filtration, hydraulics and electricity before being tested.
"If you're going to do more than just regular vacuuming or just chemicals, you're going to fix something, replace a heater do pipework . . . if you're going to do something like that, then you need to have this certification," Sherwood said.
"With a class like this, they not only learn knowledge that's going to make them better as an employee that might down the road lead to more money and a better job," he continued. "But it also helps the company with efficiency if they learn even just a couple tricks that will speed them up. And it gives them the advantage that now out in the field."
The Certified Hot Tub Technician course was led by Brooks Holcomb, technical advisor and safety manager, Memphis Pools, who said it gave attendees “a good overview of spa operations, troubleshooting and understanding of electrical devices and components.”
The 16-hour class covers hot water chemistry and solving water problems, maintenance and care, along with safety issues concerning hot tubs, chemicals and personal protection.
The course “provides not only the book info, but it also provides interaction between different levels of techs and different techniques of troubleshooting and solving problems, Holcomb said.
Attendees must pass a written exam to receive certification.
It was also an introduction for many.
“I had more newbies than I’ve ever had in any other class,” Holcomb noted.