A New Venture

This month, I am proud to add Certified FenestrationMaster (CFM) to the list of certifications, accreditations and accomplishments I’ve gained during my 38 years of experience in this ever-changing industry. I am one of the first people to earn this certification through AAMA’s FenestrationMasters™ program.

FenestrationAssociate is offered for entry-level certification and is available to all. FenestrationMaster is the advanced level and requires the candidate to have either six years fenestration product-related experience, or a four-year degree in engineering, architecture or applied sciences plus four years of industry experience. Those who choose to enroll in the program receive a candidate guide, study notebook and three-month access to AAMA’s Study Resource Center with read-only access to AAMA documents referenced in the courses.

While I may have been qualified as a candidate for the advanced-level certification, I still needed to do my homework and successfully complete the 32 in-depth, online courses. These include:

Group 1

  • Window Selection
  • Glass Selection
  • Requirements of NAFS-08 Standard (and variances from earlier editions)
  • Specialty Tests (blast, impact, tornado, acoustics)

Group 2

  • Profile Performance and Material Considerations
  • Coatings and Finishes

Group 3

  • Hardware, Weatherstrip and Weatherseals
  • Sealants and Adhesives Used during Factory Fabrication

Group 4

  • Code Requirements
  • History of the I-Codes and Current Requirements
  • AAMA Certification and  I-Code Compliance
  • Special Code Requirements: ADA, WOCD, fire safety, safety glazing
  • Energy Efficiency and Thermal Performance
  • ICC energy code requirements and Energy Star requirements
  • Thermal Performance Certification versus Testing
  • Skylights for Daylighting

Group 5

  • Installation
  • Commercial Installation Standard Practice
  • Residential Installation
  • Flashing
  • Field Testing and Forensic Evaluation
  • Fenestration Anchorage

Group 6

  • Aluminum Curtain Wall Design
  • Aluminum Storefronts and Entrances
  • Energy and the Architectural Fenestration Industry

Since I have been involved in commercial fenestration most of my career, it was challenging to learn some of the courses that involved PVC and fiberglass windows, residential installation standards and anchorage.

Once I finished the coursework and spent several hours studying the material, I felt prepared and completed the exam. The final exam must be completed at an official testing center or using an AAMA-authorized proctor. The test itself was straightforward and I felt confident about the results. If a candidate fails, they are encouraged to brush up on their studies and retake the test. They have up to three attempts in 12 months to pass the exam.

For me, scheduling the exam was probably the most difficult task. As my years of experience add up, so too do my professional responsibilities. I’m proud to be part of a company that continues to grow and thrive, especially in light of the economic climate. As the company expands its products, its locations and its knowledge, we continue to keep our customers as the top priority.

As I consider my commitments for the New Year, I must say goodbye for now. Thank you to Architects’ Guide to Glass and Metal magazine and Key Communications for the opportunity, to those who took the time to comment or email me, and to all of you who took the time to read. It’s been a pleasure to share this last year with you.