Waynesville, NC – For many companies and organizations, being able to offer their entire staff or membership the opportunity to learn directly from CSIA’s expert instructors is typically seen as outside the realm of possibility.

As the owner of Clean Sweep the Fireplace Shop in rural Waynesville, North Carolina, and the current Vice President of the North Carolina Chimney Sweep Association (NCCSA), Patrick Tinsley is well aware of the challenges associated with providing educational opportunities on a limited budget.

Short on ideas on curriculum he could offer during the 2016 NCCSA Winter Meeting, Tinsley made what he described as “an 11th hour phone call” to CSIA Board President Mark Stoner. 

“(Mark) told me there was a new (CSIA) program in the works,” said Tinsley, “(having CSIA come to North Carolina) wasn’t even on my radar, to be honest.”

After a few conversations between Tinsley and CSIA staff, CSIA Director of Education, Ashley Eldridge, put together two full days of curriculum (total CEUs: 14.75) including technical courses taught by Eldridge himself, business development courses taught by CSIA Director of Marketing & Communications, Jordan Whitt, and an updated EPA Burn Wise presentation provided by the EPA’s own Larry Brockman.

For Tinsley, having CSIA provide instruction at his event was not only a huge relief, but it was surprisingly uncomplicated.

“(Partnering with CSIA) was very easy. It allowed me to focus on logistics: making sure rooms were lined up and meals were provided. It was hugely convenient,” said Tinsley, adding, “CSIA are experts at content, so it makes perfect sense.”

When asked what he would tell other organizations who might find themselves in a similar situation regarding a lack of training options, Tinsley was quick to offer advice based on his recent experience.

“It’s never too early to start planning your event, even if you feel like you have a year to do it, don’t procrastinate”, said Tinsley, “go ahead and make the call (to CSIA) and make life easier on yourself. || An edited version of this story will appear in the February edition of NCSG’s Sweeping magazine.

Here are a few photos from the long weekend:


Interested in having CSIA instructors provide training at an upcoming event? Call CSIA Program Specialist, Claire Rutledge, at (317) 837-5362, or email her at crutledge@csia.org.