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RVSA Vehicle Service Academy (Attendance Notes from howson)

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  • Summary Thoughts on My Time at RVSA

    Without a doubt, the value of an RVSA education right now is due to the Master Certified Instructor Robert (Bob) Berry. If you have a thin skin or are easily offended...look somewhere else. But if you're looking for an instructor that will do everything in his power to "go down that road with you" (if you'll take the first step), Bob's your guy. Just be prepared for good-natured verbal barbs and be willing to fling some back in his direction.

    What could be improved? I hesitate to criticize or sound negative, but I owe the readers of this thread an honest opinion from my perspective.

    1) Investment in the school seems lacking. Apparently there's a transition in progress from what the school was to what it will be in the future. I wish nothing but success to RVSA and the current administrator as he has a huge task ahead of him to update the curriculum. Some of the presentations are a decade (or more) old. Some material is taught when it's known the students will never touch it (or see it). (Except for in Tennessee...sorry, inside joke that my classmates will understand.) This may be fussy on my part, but the many spelling errors detract from the presentations, too. In a word, the presentations lack a professional, consistent look.

    2) The tests are an exercise in untangling verbal pretzels. They were annoying to say the least. The test results do not reflect if the person will be a good RV technician. Honestly, I didn't care (too much) about the test results since my objective was not to pass a test--it was to learn about RV systems. During a conversation with the staff I suggested the tests should be pass/fail instead of a numerical grade. They responded that the Florida Dept of Education and the VA require a letter grade. (Oh well...)

    3) This one is probably out of the school's control, but if I could make something happen it would be to have an adjacent RV parking area next to the school for the attendees. Having all of us stay in the same place would facilitate a lot more social interaction and impromptu study sessions. My class was scattered across many, many parks so coordinating after-school activities was difficult.

    4) By far the most irritating part of the school was being tested on information that was only presented orally. Not everything was available in the Powerpoint presentations or through a reference document. Even worse, some days Bob would read the slides word-for-word as they were projected on the screen. "Death by Powerpoint" (occasionally) was avoided by massive intake of black coffee.

    Let me end this by stating that even with the critiques as documented in this post, overall the investment of time was well worth it to me and I'm glad I attended. While there is still much to learn, my knowledge of RV systems is light-years ahead of where it was before attending the school. (Again, Bob's the primary reason.)

    So this is it for original posts from me on this thread. If anyone has any questions feel free to ask away or, if desired, send me a PM with your question about the school and I'll do my best to answer it.

    Howard


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    Forum moderators are not GD employees--we are volunteers and owners presumably just like yourself. Unless specifically mentioned otherwise, we have nothing to gain should you choose to purchase a product or engage a service we discuss on this forum.

    Howard, 2017 Ford F-350 DRW, '19 315RLTSPlus

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    • You classroom looks like a bar.......
      2018 Dodge 3500 6.7 Cummins w Aisin and 9 cup holders
      2021 Reflection 303RLS, Haloview RD7, Strong-arms, Micro-Air364

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      • Originally posted by Scott'n'Wendy View Post
        You classroom looks like a bar.......
        Those graduation grins may be somewhat powered by a margarita (or two).
        Forum moderators are not GD employees--we are volunteers and owners presumably just like yourself. Unless specifically mentioned otherwise, we have nothing to gain should you choose to purchase a product or engage a service we discuss on this forum.

        Howard, 2017 Ford F-350 DRW, '19 315RLTSPlus

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        • Like a lot of things there are should be's and there are r's. Ok, I hosed the grammar on that one. But having put together thousands of hours of technical training I can attest that it is not an easy task. Added on top of that, you have educators and you have subject matter experts. Educators are not subject matter experts, but they know how to put together a consistent professional educational process. But when you try to get subject matter experts to put together an educational process it's typically a mess. Spelling errors of course, inconsistent presentation techniques a given, death by power point...my favorite. Of course in my defense power point was a new technology when I was utilizing it.

          Now you add on the disparity of RV, pop ups to London Aires, you have a wide range of material to cover. Then add on the new innovative improvements, like level up and One Control, don't forget heat pumps. It would take a very large organized entity to create the perfect up to date cover everything course.

          All that to say, after reading your input I think you got a lot of background information in a very short period of time presented in the best available means. Like many thins in life, it aint perfect, but it works.

          Congratulations again on passing the course.
          2017 Momentum 376, 2019 Ford F450
          2018 Yamaha XT250 Dual Sport Motorcycle
          Kota the dog and KC the Kitty Cat

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          • Originally posted by howson View Post
            Summary Thoughts on My Time at RVSA

            Click image for larger version  Name:	RVSA Buddies.JPG Views:	15 Size:	204.4 KB ID:	70756
            Just gotta point those out. Just remember, we were all there vicariously.
            Last edited by howson; 11-24-2021, 07:13 AM.
            Jerry and Kelly Powell, with Halo, Nash, Reid, Cleo, and the new baby kitty Rosie..
            Pilot (Zebulon), NC
            2020 Solitude 390RK-R

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