The most recent class of graduates to complete their technical training at The Eco Plumbers University (Eco U) gathered recently to celebrate their accomplishments, receive their certificates, and pose for photos – all while enjoying a piece of graduation cake, of course!

This time, the icing on the cake – metaphorically speaking – held special meaning: twoEco U students happened to be the 999th and 1,000th graduates of NexTech Academy’s Tech Builder training program.

We’re excited to honor Devaunghn Beason and Aaron Beckner – two bright, hardworking tradesmen – who crossed the Eco U finish line together as NexTech’s technical graduates #999 and #1,000. We are also incredibly proud of the 998 grads who came before them, all from Nexstar member locations across the U.S. and Canada.

Devaunghn and Aaron are jumping into their new careers as independent plumbing service professionals with the Columbus, OH-based Eco Plumbers, Electricians and HVAC Technicians, one of the Midwest’s top home services companies.

Meet Devaunghn

With graduation behind him, Devaunghn is excited about what the future holds.

“I was interested in plumbing and enjoy how it’s different and changes every day – there’s always something new in this trade, and I really love that,” he explained. “My training was an informative and interactive experience; I got to learn the plumbing trade within a classroom setting and practice the physical skills in the lab.”

The Eco Plumbers University trains technicians in a controlled lab setting, with a university trainer directing the hands-on learning portion, where students learn repair and replacement techniques. Students work in a large skills lab built like a real home to develop a critical understanding of home plumbing systems.

“My training experience was phenomenal. Coming into this trade without any experience was kind of scary, but NexTech really helped me get a better understanding of general plumbing,” Devaunghn reflected. “I also think NexTech is a really good foundation. I’m looking forward to being a great service technician and gathering as much experience and information in the plumbing field as possible.”

Meet Aaron

Aaron has his mom to thank, at least in part, for helping him discover the technical plumbing training program at Eco U.

“I’ve always enjoyed hands-on work, and I actually applied first to a different plumbing company,” Aaron explained. “But I never heard back from them. My mom saw an Eco truck one day and suggested I apply. Growing up, my parents and grandparents always expressed to me the value of working hard – and more specifically, learning a trade. I sure am thankful they pointed me in this direction.”   

Aaron explained he feels confident as he wraps up his training at Eco U. “I am increasingly excited to get out in the field and help people and grow in my career,” he said. “I have thoroughly enjoyed my training and I believe the NexTech curriculum has played a big part in that. It’s a great course and keeps you very engaged. I always looked forward to watching the Wake-up Call videos.”

More About Eco and The Eco Plumbers University

Complete with its own dean and top trainers in the plumbing field, the Eco U program has graduated more than 110 plumbing technicians since its founding in 2021. The program leverages NexTech Academy online curriculum paired with plumbing technical training, which includes repair and install techniques and technician ride-a-long sessions for hands-on training in customer homes.

A tradition at Eco U is to celebrate their graduates’ successes with a ceremony. This moment marks each student’s ability to demonstrate a high level of commitment to learning the Eco way of serving clients – meaning excellent technical skills paired with customer service soft skills. Led by owner and CEO Aaron Gaynor, the team at Eco Plumbers, Electricians, and HVAC is passionate about providing a 5-star experience that educates and guides clients to confident decisions about their homes.

Email [email protected] for more information on joining their team.

More on NexTech Academy

Five years ago, NexTech Academy was launched as a resource to help Nexstar Network members train, develop, and retain their own technical workforce. Today, NexTech is comprised of a dedicated team that is proud to advocate for the skilled trades every day. The NexTech coaches work alongside Nexstar members to help them develop their own customized, in-house training academies.

NexTech Academy is comprised three core offerings:

Email the NexTech team with questions or to learn more at [email protected].

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