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Associations Focus: Back to School

Aug 1, 2007 12:00 PM

Association membership offers AV professionals plenty of educational opportunities this summer.

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Just as summer reaches its sultry peak, NSCA's Electronic Systems Technician (EST) training program is about to begin.

NSCA University's EST Training Series is frequently cited as the most complete program of its kind available for technicians and installers. It is also one of the most flexible, allowing you to train staff members inhouse and according to their individual levels of experience.

Using a combination of instructor-led online classes and hands-on local schooling hosted by an approved facilitator, the EST Training Series offers three distinct course levels. Level 1 provides an entry-level foray into the low-voltage trade, while levels 2 and 3 provide advanced knowledge. Designed for more experienced technicians, levels 2 and 3 cover far-reaching topics, including fiber optics, high-end test equipment, wireless communications, and access-control systems.

EST Master Instructor Larry Garter oversees the EST Training Series. Garter directly manages online instruction, lesson plan development, material coordination, and support. He is a long-standing NSCA member with 25 years of experience in the communications industry. He is also the founder and principal of Techplex, a technology consulting firm based in Roscommon, Mich.

Student registrations for upcoming Level 1-3 EST Training Series instruction must be received by Aug. 27. To register, contact NSCA at (800) 446-6722 or visit


Randy Vaughan was recently named the 2007 NSCA Educator of the Year. Vaughan, president of Portsmouth, Va.-based AE Systems, was singled out for the distinction based upon high instructor and course evaluation rankings he received from NSCA University students.

Teaching within NSCA University's College of System Sales, Vaughan imparted his own ineffable wisdom to students in classes with course titles such as “Talk the Talk for New Sales Professionals” and “Killer Proposal Writing.”

For the second year running, NSCA also honored top-rated educators within each of NSCA University's individual colleges with Instructor of the Year accolades. These recipients were Marc Forman (Alarm, Electronics, and Communications) from the College of Systems Sales; Gary Kayye (Kayye Consulting) from the College of Business; Blair McNair (JBL Professional) from the College of System Design; John Murray (ProSonic Solutions) from the College of Technical Knowledge; Brad Nelson (Sound Solutions Northwest) from the College of Project Management; and Ernest Schirmer (Acentech) from the College of Allied Professionals.


Do you know someone with a business strategy that has brought about unexpected growth? Are you a commercial electronic systems company that has experienced exceptional results because of your efforts?

Meet these criteria and you just may find yourself in line to receive one of NSCA's Excellence in Business Awards, which will be handed out at this year's Fall Business Conference, Oct. 21-23, in San Diego. Nominate yourself or others. The awards will be given based upon success in categories including growth strategies, professional development, fiscal responsibility, and philanthropic contributions.

Only four companies will be selected for the awards; winners will receive complimentary admission to the Fall Business Conference (an $845 value), have an opportunity to tell their story at the conference's opening night reception, and be highlighted in member newsletters and other industry publications.

Visit and click “awards” to fill out the nomination form online.


Audio-Technica has contributed an additional $10,000 in support of the NSCA Education Foundation, maintaining its place at the elite Founder's Club giving level.

The gift will be put toward the foundation's 2007-2008 budget. Initiatives for the next fiscal year include programs to reach out to students, finance student scholarships and memberships, develop curriculum, and fund further education for industry professionals.

For more information about NSCA, visit or call (800) 446-6722.

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