July 26, 2019: Avotek offers a new edition of the industry-favorite textbook, Advanced Composites. Ms. Foreman wrote this book to help students become the next generation of aircraft technicians by teaching them about composites and their repair. Instructors and students alike will benefit from these changes:
This textbook covers a wide variety of topics in the advanced composites field. It does this over 12 highly detailed and beautifully imaged chapters that are designed to be as user friendly as possible. The 12 chapters are as follows: Introduction to Composites, Reinforcing Fibers, Matrix Materials, Core Materials, Composite Manufacturing, Composite Safety, Applying Pressure, Methods of Curing, Machining Composites, Setting Up Shop, Assessment and Repair, and Types of Repairs.
Advanced Composites 4th edition is available for order now. A corresponding workbook is expected to be available sometime in the fall of 2019.
Avotek, of Weyers Cave, VA, develops and manufactures modern, fully functional aviation maintenance training systems; publishes a full line of high-quality, up-to-date classroom textbooks that complement its training systems; and offers online training.
Avotek has earned an industry reputation for quality and excellence. Our team of authors includes mechanics, inspectors, aviation experts, and instructors. They are actively involved in aviation maintenance training or working in the aviation maintenance field. They bring their expertise to Avotek from colleges, universities, and current hands-on experience.
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This press release is also available at https://www.avotek.com/advanced-composites-4th-edition-now-available/
The latest Boeing Pilot & Technician Outlook, anticipated to formally release at the upcoming EAA AirVenture in OshKosh, projects that 769,000 new maintenance technicians will be needed to fly and maintain the world fleet over the next 20 years. The forecast is inclusive of the commercial aviation, business aviation, and civil helicopter industries, and is up from last year's 20-year forecast of 754,000. Projected demand in North America is 193,000, up 2% from last year.
According to the report:
The demand will stem from a mix of fleet growth, retirements, and attrition. Meeting this strong demand will require a collective effort from across the global aviation industry. As several hundred thousand pilots and technicians reach retirement age over the next decade, educational outreach and career pathway programs will be essential to inspiring and recruiting the next generation of personnel...
As new generation airplanes become more prominent in the global fleet, advances in airplane technology will drive demand for a new set of skills, such as digital troubleshooting and composites repair. Concurrently, operators and MROs will be challenged to ensure technicians continue to maintain the skills and capability necessary to service the large fleet of older generation aircraft. These two skill sets often differ, creating opportunities for the industry to enhance its standard training curriculum.
Mobile and distance learning solutions are supplementing traditional classroom instruction and allow students to continue their studies outside of traditional instructor-led classes. New technologies, such as augmented and mixed reality solutions, are also being tested as a way to improve student engagement, quality of instruction, and knowledge retention. Competency-based maintenance training continues to evolve as the industry focuses on addressing individual students' needs and knowledge gaps.
The need for maintenance personnel is largest in the Asia Pacific region, which will require 266,000 new technicians. Airlines in North America will require 193,000, Europe 137,000, the Middle East 69,000, Latin America 52,000, Africa 27,000, and Russia / Central Asia 25,000.
The full forecast is available at www.boeing.com/commercial/market/pilot-technician-outlook
For a compilation of this and other notable aviation maintenance workforce reports, visit atec-amt.org/workforce
This month, the FAA notified the public of changes made to the written test bank (as further explained in revised sample exams and the latest "what's new" document).
The FAA, in collaboration with industry representatives, are currently reviewing the knowledge test bank to ensure correlation with imminent Mechanic Airman Certification Standards. Through an exam review board "boarding" process, some questions in the test bank have been edited, removed, or archived.
Aviation Supplies and Academics, Inc. (ASA) publishes specific changes made to sample exams for each test roll. That analysis can be found at www.asa2fly.com/FAA-Knowledge-Exams-W22C162.aspx.
The council continues to work through the ACS working group to ensure a documented and transparent process for creating, vetting and revising test bank questions. The FAA is currently utilizing the ACS to review and edit the test bank. ATEC Treasurer and Embry-Riddle University Aviation Maintenance Science Department Chairman Chuck Horning is the industry representative on that review board.
Members are encouraged to provide feedback on student experiences while the test bank undergoes revision to coincide with the new ACS. Send comments to email@example.com.
The next FAA test change is expected in January 2020.
RACCA’s annual scholarship program is now open for applications. The scholarships aredesigned to help aspiring pilots, aircraft maintenance technicians (AMTs) and airline managers pursue their careers.
“Affording an aviation education is increasingly difficult and our members and associate members are dedicated to ensuring there is funding available,” said President Stan Bernstein. “In recent years, we have helped students pursue AMT careers, airline management and pilots.
Providing scholarships to deserving young people interested in a career in aviation is one of the most important efforts RACCA undertakes each year. The RACCA Aviation Scholarships were established for the purpose of promoting and assisting in pursuing aviation as a career choice and to make students aware of the opportunities in the air cargo industry.”
RACCA, representing 50 air cargo carriers, many of which feed the FedEx, DHL and UPS networks, provides scholarships to assist in the payment of tuition, flight training, or to obtain new or additional licenses. The organization makes several awards each year in November.
Bernstein noted flying for a RACCA carrier is a valuable way to build flying time because it gives pilots experience in flying on a schedule, inclement weather, dealing with inflight and procedural issues surrounding cargo as well as night flying, operating in busy airspace, cockpit resource management issues and required record keeping, all of which are part of airline operations.
To qualify for the scholarships, applicants must be:
· A college student currently enrolled in an accredited aviation program.
· A resident of the United States.
· Currently carry a Grade Point Average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
Scholarship # 1 will carry the additional requirement of obtaining a letter of introduction from an existing RACCA member or RACCA associate member since the goal is for candidates to learn about the air cargo industry. If there is a RACCA member or associate member in a candidate’s immediate area, candidates should arrange to visit their operation and become familiar with all the opportunities in the growing air cargo industry. If there is no member close, candidates should call a member and tell them who they are and ask questions about the air cargo industry.
The deadline for applications is October 15, 2019 and the selection will be made by November 30 each year and distributed on December 15 to an accredited school.
The RACCA Aviation Scholarship application is available on the RACCA website.
The House Appropriations Committee approved $5 million in workforce development for in FY20 for two programs that were part of the FAA Reauthorization legislation. (See latest related story.)
The FY 2020 Transportation, House and Urban Development and related agencies (T-HUD) appropriations bill (HR 3163) approved by the House Appropriations Committee on June 4 includes full funding for both the technician workforce development and pilot education programs ($5 million for each).
The report for the T-HUD bill references the grant programs (on page 21) and states that, “The Committee supports increasing the strength and number of aviation professionals who are well-trained and can be relied upon to make air travel safe and efficient. To that end, the Committee provides $5,000,000 for the aviation maintenance technician development program and $5,000,000 for aviation workforce development program.”
While the appropriations bills is an important step towards getting the authorized program funded, members are encouraged to keep the pressure on with congressional leaders. The Aeronautical Repair Station Association is leading a coalition and has created an action center with more information at http://arsa.org/legislative/grant-program-action-center/.
Separate but related, the Building U.S. Infrastructure by Leveraging Demands for Skills (BUILDS) Act (H.R. 2831/S.1517) introduced last month by Reps. Mitchell, Bonamici, Thompson and Langevin and Sens. Kaine and Portman would also provide additional resources for aviation sector workforce development. The legislation authorizes $500 million per year (FY 2020 through FY 2024) for the Department of Labor to make grants to support workforce development in “targeted infrastructure industries”, including aviation. The bill is expected to be a workforce component of whatever infrastructure package might move this Congress. A press release on the bill is here.
Funding to support aviation workforce development is a top legislative priority for ATEC and will be at the forefront of our conversations at the upcoming Fly-In, taking place Sept. 10-13. Registration is open.
For more information on these and other legislative priorities, see the Legislative Tool Kit.
ATEC hosted a regional outreach meeting at the Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics in Pittsburgh. Twenty-seven aviation industry professionals participated in the event on June 13th. Topics ranged from council initiatives, strategic objects, and how ATEC can provide support to the local aviation maintenance technician education community. The meeting concluded with a tour of the facilities.
Thank you to all those who participated in the meeting:
James Olsen, Federal Aviation Administration
Abbey Hutter, JSfirm, LLC
Ashley Vidale, JSfirm, LLC
Heather Ottenberg, JSfirm, LLC
Joshua Eyring, Kent State University
Maureen McFarland, Kent State University
Kevin Deemer, Kent State University
Bradley Dean Blank, Liberty University
Gary Hoyle, Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics – Pittsburgh
Jason Mongan, Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics – Pittsburgh
Jason Pfarr, Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics – Pittsburgh
Suzanne Markle, Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics – Pittsburgh
Tesha Everitt, SkyWest Airlines
Allen Ray, SkyWest Airlines
Barbara Murray, TransPORTs
Chris Lima, PNC Bank
Mark Thomas, PNC Bank
Crystal Maguire, Aviation Technician Education Council
David Austin, Liberty University
David Franks, Haltec Corp
Jazmine Ward, PSA Airlines
Steven Albaugh PSA Airlines
Mike Scimio, Envoy
Aaron Nightingale, Cape Air
Kevin Dallaire, Piedmont Airlines
Matt Bryant, Republic Airways
Thomas Stordy, Republic Airways
A special thanks to PIA for hosting the event.
Join us for the next outreach meeting in Daytona Beach, followed by Seattle. Register at https://www.atec-amt.org/outreach-meetings.html.
Fourteen trade associations submitted joint comments to the part 147 supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking, delivering a powerful message of unity and support for technician education.
The coalition echoed comments previously submitted by ATEC, asking the agency to reconsider prescriptive terms, and pushing for an outcomes-based approach to regulatory oversight. The group reiterated the need for a simplified approach to dual enrollment programs and deference to Department of Education requirements for matters concerning the quality of education.
"Fixing 147 is an industry imperative," the letter said. "Handicapping our schools burdens both graduates and employers. Give us the flexible and dynamic rule needed to ensure we can educate the future workforce by the best means necessary."
In addition to ATEC, the following organizations signed the letter:
Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges
Aeronautical Repair Station Association
Aerospace Maintenance Council
Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association
Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association
Airlines for America®
Cargo Airline Association
International Air Transport Association
National Air Carrier Association
National Air Transportation Association
National Business Aviation Association
Professional Aviation Maintenance Association
Regional Airline Association
Read the joint comments here: www.regulations.gov/document?D=FAA-2015-3901-0132.
In a June 12 submission, ATEC voiced its feedback to the latest FAA rulemaking regarding aviation maintenance technician schools.
The comments, a committee-run work product that took three months and more than ten conference calls to create, push back on what the council says would create an overly-prescriptive system and stifle an already inadequate mechanic pipeline.
The submission calls for FAA deference in all matters concerning the quality of education, an element that falls squarely in the Department of Education's (ED) purview. As further explained in the comments, "Higher institutions of learning are overseen by accreditors that ensure educational outcomes are achieved through annual audits and regular oversight. The agency’s proposals duplicate—and often contradict—these accreditation requirements."
The council also reiterated it's plea for an outcomes-based approach, one that would utilize new mechanic airman certification standards as the basis for curriculum, and negate the need for the agency to micromanage schools through curriculum approvals and hour requirements.
Finally, the council offered an alternative to the satellite system proposal set forth in the supplement. It suggests a simplified approach that would allow AMTS to include "additional fixed locations" on their operations specs, consistent with processes for other air agencies. The familiar scheme would allow schools to provide content at local high schools and support dual enrollment programs, so long as the "additional fixed location" met the requirements of part 147. Indeed, as the council stated in its comments, the agency could implement this opportunity even before a formal rule change.
Read the council's comments in their entirety by clicking on the button below.
The trade association highly recommends that the community provide feedback on the recent supplemental proposal. Comments are due Monday, June 17.
To aid those efforts, the council has created two templates--one for AMTS and one for industry--to facilitate meaningful feedback.
It is important to note that submission of the "form letters" provided below do not count as a "vote" for or against the proposal. ATEC's intention is for the community to provide real-world examples that support the positions set forth in the council's comment submission.
Instructions for submitting comment:
Submit an abstract to be considered for presentation at the ATEC Annual Conference research roundtable breakout.
The purpose of the research roundtable is to provide a forum for ATEC members to share their research. This roundtable is designed to encourage research collaboration, generate interest in aviation maintenance-related research, and encourage journal submissions to the ATEC Journal. Additionally, educators who require publications and presentations for tenure or promotion can use this as an opportunity to satisfy some of the requirements. Presenters will be selected based on abstract submissions as further outlined below.
Abstract submission requirements
Abstract review and selection
The abstract is due on November 1, 2019. The review committee will select the abstracts for presentation by November 15, 2019.
The one-hour conference breakout session will comprise of multiple presentations from the abstracts selected by the review committee.
For questions and/or comments, contact the roundtable moderator, Daniel H. Siao at Daniel.Siao@mtsu.edu.
To brief the community on the particulars on the recent Federal Aviation Administration Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations part 147 Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNPRM), and to assist stakeholders with their own comments (due June 17, 2019), the council held an online webinar on May 30. The recorded version is available for free to all members of the community.
Update: The President has formally acknowledged AMT Day: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/presidential-message-aviation-maintenance-technician-day/
Aviation leaders sent a letter to the president earlier this week, seeking formal recognition of May 24 as Aviation Maintenance Technician Day. The day is already officially recognized by nearly all 50 United States, Commonwealths and Territories, United States Congress, and United States Senate.
The letter, initiated by the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association and the Aerospace Maintenance Council, requests that "the White House honor a true American hero that was almost forgotten by history, and recognize the importance of the contributions made by Charles E. Taylor and the men and women who have followed in his footsteps by celebrating Aviation Maintenance Technician Day on May 24 of this year and each year following."
In addition to ATEC, AMFA and AMC, the letter was signed by--
Aeronautical Repair Station Association
Aircraft Electronics Association
Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association
Airlines for America
Aviation Mechanics Coalition
Helicopter Association International
National Air Carrier Association
National Air Transportation Association
Professional Aviation Maintenance Association
Regional Airline Association
The council's annual event will take place Sept. 10-13, 2019 in Washington DC. All aviation education stakeholders are invited to Join the community to spread the word about the positive impact of aviation maintenance education.
The event will include a day of roundtable discussions with FAA, Dept. of Ed and Dept. of Labor officials. Attendees will discuss ways to enhance the maintenance technician pipeline and prepare for day two's visits with congressional representatives.
An Aug. 8 webinar will ensure all attendees are properly prepared for their visit. Get more information on our issues, and register for both the webinar and the Fly-in below.
Last month, the agency published the long-awaited supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) for Title 14 CFR part 147, the regulation governing aviation maintenance technician schools.
The proposal "supplements" the agency's 2015 notice of proposed rulemaking, which recommended removal of static curriculum requirements and allowance for a credit-hour system. ATEC and others called for more flexibility that would allow for competency-based programs and expansion of curriculum into high schools. The SNPRM makes additional proposals to address those concerns.
While the community applauds the agency for offering a solution, elements in its proposal miss the mark. The SNPRM layers in a complicated web of requirements and approvals for competency-based programs and satellite locations, many of which duplicate accreditation mandates.
In its comments to the SNPRM, the council will reiterate its plea for FAA deference in all matters concerning the quality of education, an element that falls squarely in the Dept. of Education's purview. It will ask that the agency focus its oversight on items specific to a certificated A&P program, such as facility, equipment, and material requirements, unique instructor qualifications, and assessment based on student performance of the mechanic test.
It is ATEC's position that accredited higher institutions of learning not be subject to duplicative--and sometimes contradictory--government requirements. The Dept. of Ed and its accrediting bodies are the education experts, and work in partnership with our schools to ensure educational outcomes are achieved. The council's comments to the SNPRM will be grounded in that theme, and offer alternative language that gives our schools more flexibility, and puts less burden on our stewards of aviation safety.
ATEC's docket submission will be available to the community in advance of the comment period deadline, so that stakeholders can align with the council's stance in their own comments, if they so choose.
For a full analysis, read an article that ran in the latest edition of Aviation Week's Inside MRO, Proposed Regulation Raises Questions About FAA’s Role In Education.
To brief the community on the particulars, and assist schools and companies with their own comments (due June 17), the council is holding an online webinar on May 30. The online event is free to government employees and ATEC members.
On April 16, the Federal Aviation Administration published its long-awaited part 147 supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM). The agency is requesting public comment on three new proposals: competency-based curriculum, satellite locations, and changes to the current "norms report."
On May 30, ATEC Executive Director Crystal Maguire will provide a membership briefing on the supplement to include an overview of the rulemaking, insight on its potential impact, and step-by-step instructions on how you can actively participate through comment submission.
The webinar is free to government employees and ATEC members. A recorded version will be subsequently available on the ATEC website for those not able to attend the live event.
ATEC delivered a letter to congressional leaders voicing its opposition to The Protect Students Act of 2019 (S.867). Masked rhetorically as a student protection aid, the bill would severely limit proprietary aviation maintenance technician schools from serving students and veterans, and negatively impact aerospace companies looking to hire FAA-certified A&P mechanics and other aviation technical personnel.
"Twenty-three of the 171 FAA-certificated schools are proprietary institutions. While these schools only make up 13% of the AMTS population, they produce 25% of AMTS graduates within the United States—one out of every four aviation maintenance graduates are produced from tax-paying proprietary institutions," said ATEC Executive Director Crystal Maguire in a letter to the bill's co-sponsors. "If enacted, S.867 would threaten the continued viability of these proprietary schools and negatively impact an estimated 1,000 student veterans currently enrolled in these schools."
Historically, the U.S. Government has required many things of proprietary schools that it does not require of public universities, community colleges, or non-profit institutions. One of these requirements is the 90/10 rule, which mandates that proprietary schools derive no more than 90% of their income from Title IV financial aid funding sources (such as Pell Grants and Stafford Loans). The remaining 10% must come from other funding sources such as student payments, family contributions, employer assistance, vocational rehab, Veterans Administration benefits, and the GI Bill.
S.867 seeks to change the 90/10 ratio to 85/15—meaning the 10% of required income from non-Title IV sources would increase to 15%—and recategorize GI Bill benefits as a federal Title IV funding source. If Veterans Benefits were considered Title IV funding, many of our proprietary schools would have to stop taking GI Bill funds to meet the new ratio requirements. Consequently, the military would default on its promise to veterans that they can use their GI Bill at any accredited and approved institution of higher education, and likely school shut downs would cost the aerospace industry a quarter of its mechanic school graduates.
The proposed law comes at a time when the aviation industry is preparing for a massive technical workforce shortage. ATEC’s recent Pipeline Report found that mechanics are retiring faster than they are being replaced; the mechanic population is expected to decrease 5% in the next 15 years. Oliver Wyman, a technical consulting group, forecasts that demand for aviation maintenance technicians will outstrip supply by 2022. The Aeronautical Repair Station Association estimates the technician shortage is costing industry $100 million per month. Meanwhile, forecasts by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Boeing, and Airbus project a need for thousands of additional mechanics in the next 10-20 years.
Get more information on this issue and other ATEC legislative priorities in the council's Legislative Tool Kit.
NC3 is hosting its 3rd annual Aviation Training at WSU Tech June 10-14. This will be the only opportunity this year to get certified in Structural Sheet Metal Assembly and Precision Electrical Termination. Instructors who attend this training will:
In addition to the NC3 aviation certifications, there are several certification courses offered at this event for advanced manufacturing, 3D printing, automotive and safety.
Click here to register for the event, or visit www.NC3.net to learn more about NC3 as an organization.
On May 6, a coalition of 16 aviation industry associations jointly submitted comments to the FAA’s Draft Advisory Circular (AC) 65-30B, “Overview of the Aviation Maintenance Profession.” Led by the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA), the group continued work begun in 2014 when the agency last released a draft version of the AC – which hasn’t been officially updated since 2001. (See related story.)
“As representatives of persons involved in the design, production, operations and maintenance of civil aviation products and articles, each organization supporting these comments depends on a vibrant pool of talented aviation maintenance professionals to ensure safety worldwide,” the group explained in its submission. Comments focused on illustration of the breadth of opportunities available in aviation maintenance, including noncertificated professionals, certificated repairmen, certificated mechanics, mechanics holding inspection authorization and transitioning military personnel.
“There is no single point of entry or career trajectory for aviation maintenance professionals,” the draft industry submission said. “Depending on knowledge, education, experience, skill and curiosity, individuals with an interest in the kinds of hands-on, intellectually-challenging and technically-skilled work performed in all manner of aviation maintenance facilities may begin or continue a career through any one of the ‘pathways’ described in this AC.”
While the agency deliberates industry comment, schools are encouraged to download the community's work product to help illustrate the career paths available to would-be aviators.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 28, 2019
CONTACT: Philip Barbour, 205-939-1700, 205-617-9007
ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- The Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Foundation is now accepting nominations for the 2019 Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award, honoring a leader in global aviation safety. The Award will be presented during the 72nd Annual International Air Safety Summit, taking place Nov 4-6 in Taipei, Taiwan.
Presented since 1956, the Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award recognizes notable achievement in the field of civil or military aviation safety in method, design, invention, study or other improvement. The Award's recipient is selected for a "significant individual or group effort contributing to improving aviation safety, with emphasis on original contributions," and a "significant individual or group effort performed above and beyond normal responsibilities."
Mechanics, engineers and others outside of top administrative or research positions should be especially considered. The contribution need not be recent, especially if the nominee has not received adequate recognition. Nominations that were not selected as past winners of the Award can be submitted one additional time for consideration. Please note that self-nominations will not be considered.
The Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award's story dates back 74 years. On April 14, 1945, after visiting family in Pittsburgh, Laura Taber Barbour was aboard a Pennsylvania Central Airlines DC-3 when it crashed into the rugged terrain of Cheat Mountain near Morgantown, West Virginia. All passengers and crew were killed. In the years following, her husband, Dr. Clifford E. Barbour and son, Clifford E. Barbour, Jr., established the Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award in her honor.
The Award Board, composed of leaders in the field of aviation, meets each year to conduct a final review of nominees and selection of the current year's recipient.
Please help us honor this year's most deserving recipient. Nominations, including a 1-2-page narrative, can be submitted via the Laura Taber Barbour Foundation website at http://ltbaward.org/the-award/nomination-form/.
Nominations will be accepted until May 10, 2019.
For more information, including a complete history of Award recipients, see www.ltbaward.org.
ABOUT THE LAURA TABER BARBOUR AIR SAFETY AWARD: The Award was established in 1956 through early association with the Flight Safety Foundation and from its founding has enjoyed a rich history of Award Board members, nominees and Award recipients. In 2013, the non-profit Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Foundation was formed from members of the Award Board, the aviation community and the Barbour family. As the foundation plans to broaden the scope of its intent, with great purpose, the Laura Taber Barbour Air Safety Award will continue to spotlight those champions who pioneer breakthroughs in flight safety.
The Federal Aviation Administration has published the long-awaited part 147 supplemental proposed rule for public inspection. The official version will publish in the federal register on April 16.
ATEC executive staff, board leadership and committee members will review over the next few days. Stay tuned for a full analysis.
Comments will be due 60 days after publication, which should fall on or about June 15.
The proposal is available at https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/04/16/2019-06399/aviation-maintenance-technician-schools.
On April 11, the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) received the FAA’s response to a Feb. 5 letter sent by a coalition of aviation organizations, including ATEC, regarding funding for the new aviation workforce development grant programs created by Sec. 625 of last year’s FAA reauthorization law.
Assistant FAA administrator for human resource management Annie Andrews stated that while the agency was committed to implementing the workforce development initiatives, there were no plans to begin before 2021.
An aviation coalition, led by ARSA, will continue to push for program funding in FY 2020 appropriations bills so the FAA can start making grants in FY 2020. The trade association is calling upon the community to make initiation of the grant programs a near-term priority for Congress and the FAA.
If your organization is in the district of a member of the House or Senate appropriations committees visit ARSA's action center to send a note in support of the initiative: arsa.org/legislative/grant-program-action-center.
Read the FAA's response in its entirety here: faagrantresponse-20190412.pdf
Each year, ATEC recognizes excellence in aviation maintenance training by honoring an outstanding educator and an exemplary student. At it's annual conference awards luncheon on March 18, the council announced the 2019 recipients of the James Rardon AMT Student of the Year and the Ivan D. Livi AMT Educator of the Year awards:
Student, Colorado Northwestern Community College
Teachers describe Ms. Green as a self-disciplined worker, a model for the rest of the class. She maintains a 3.97 GPA while juggling other obligations as a work-study student and mother of a toddler. Ms. Green has also been awarded scholarships from the Association of Women in Aviation Maintenance and the Colorado Association of Business Aviation.
Aviation Department Head and Instructor, Westfield Technical Academy
Mr. Wilson was instrumental in setting up and obtaining certification for the Westfield's grade 9-12 airframe and powerplant program, the only one of its kind in the New England area. According to peers, "Mr. Wilson will grab a mop or a broom and assist with shop cleanup, never asking someone to do something he is not willing to do himself." He has organized and spearheaded several events that bring learning into the classroom, and enhance community awareness of the program. He served in the U.S. Air Force and has been at the helm of the Westfield program for nearly four years.
Ms. Green and Mr. Wilson were presented the award at the conference. Each received an expenses-paid trip to the conference, provided in part by the Northrop Rice Foundation, a plaque, and a $750 cash award courtesy of JSfirm.com.
The ATEC award selection committee is incredibly proud of these two individuals, and the work they have done and will continue to do as aviation maintenance professionals.
This story was reprinted with their permission from Aircraft Maintenance Technology Magazine. Written by ATEC Communications Committee Chair and ATEC Journal Editor Karen Johnson.
Council committee chairs highlighted trade association initiatives including activities in support of FAA reauthorization’s workforce grant and Title 14 Code of Federal Regulation part 147 promulgation directive. Membership reported a 72% aviation maintenance technical school market share with sights set on 85% by 2021. Communications has begun researching opportunities for enhanced member engagement through online tools, and the meeting planning committee announced dates and locations for four regional outreach meetings and plans to hold next year’s annual conference in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
Flight Standards Director Tim Shaver updated attendees on on-going management and cultural changes to improve agency processes and the subsequent impact on working relationships between local FAA offices and certificate holders. Other FAA representatives facilitated sessions and breakouts throughout the event including briefings on upcoming changes to mechanic applications and Organization Designation Authorization program elements that would allow schools to administer oral and practical testing. Officials and industry partners also gave an update on imminent airman certification standards and how the new testing standard will impact part 147 program content.
Even with the wide variety of topics discussed during the general and break-out sessions there were two prevalent themes: alleviating the technician workforce shortage and reversing the negative perception of career technical education. These issues took center stage in sessions highlighting ATEC’s Choose Aerospace initiative, results from a recent survey of aviation recruiters regarding candidate shortfalls, and a new Kansas pathway program.
Choose Aerospace is an awareness campaign spearheaded by ATEC to bring together a coalition of industry stakeholders to quantify staffing needs and promote aerospace technical careers. This year’s panel discussed solution-oriented strategies that the aviation maintenance community can implement in a concerted effort to alleviate the workforce shortage. Panelists called for companies to join the effort, and for educational institutions to help spread the word. For more information about that initiative, visit www.ChooseAerospace.org.
Directors from Textron Aviation and representatives from the Wichita Public school system briefed attendees on a new program that provides high school students with immediate technical employment potential. Kansas’ Aviation Pathway illustrated how public-private partnerships can create career paths for students while addressing local employment needs. “Wichita is a great city with dynamic relationships between education, business, and industry,” said WSU Tech Dean of Aviation Technologies Jim Hall during the session. “The program provides local employers with a skilled workforce and gives our students the training they need to begin successful careers.” The purpose of the panel was to share what the city and employers learned, and to expand existing partnerships. “Our goal as a school is to always put students first and we wanted to help other schools learn from us and we from them,” said Hall.
A popular session with attendees was an employer-run panel discussion surrounding knowledge and skill gaps for new technical personnel. Representatives from United Airlines, Piedmont Airlines, AAR Corp., Textron Aviation, and General Atomics Aeronautical Systems elaborated on results of a recent survey of industry recruiters. Attendees got direct accounts of what the perceived gaps in critical thinking and soft skills are among graduates and how educators can work to minimize them.
Following a brief message from U.S. Representative Ron Estes (R-KS), the Northrop Rice Foundation announced school and individual recipients of several awards and scholarships supported through the generous contributions of United Airlines, NIDA Corporation, Avotek, Aircraft Technical Book Company, and Snap-on to name a few. ATEC also recognized Westfield Technical Academy’s Galen Wilson as this year’s educator of the year, and Colorado Northwestern Community College’s Mikayla Green as student of the year. The two award recipients received an all-expenses-paid trip to accept the award, and for the first time, a monetary gift, courtesy of JSfirm.com.
For the third year, ATEC facilitated the Employer Link, intended to facilitate education-employer partnerships and to provide networking opportunities for attendees and 16 employer-company sponsors. This year’s event was held at the Kansas Aviation Museum, and incorporated ATEC’s first student career fair, where 100 students attended to learn about career opportunities with participating companies.
A full-day of breakouts guided attendees through various tracks focused on administration, regulatory issues, talent sourcing, instructor needs, and technical training with topics ranging from certification standards to English proficiency in the aviation field to using augmented reality in the classroom.
The conference again showcased an exhibition hall, where 21 companies and education vendors provided information and resources on everything from instructional products to tools. The largest-ever group of vendors included some new to the show, and others that have been involved for over 25 years.
The event concluded with tours highlighting Wichita aerospace. Attendees were ushered to Bombardier and Textron Aviation facilities, and visit Doc, Wichita’s Boeing B-29 Superfortress, in his new home, $6.5 million facility that opened just weeks prior to their visit.
Conference presentations and materials are available online at 2019 Annual Conference.
Stay tuned for 2020 conference dates, which will be announced soon!
More than forty one organizations, including ATEC, sent a letter to transportation committee leadership in both the House and the Senate, asking for full funding of a grant program created by Section 625 of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act of 2018 (Public Law 115-254).
The grant programs, spearheaded by the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA) and supported by a broad industry coalition, were created and included in the reauthorization bill to help recruit and educate the next generation of aerospace maintenance workers and pilots.
While getting the programs authorized was major victory for the coalition, its work is far from complete. The next step is to convince Congress to appropriate the money necessary to provide the grants.
The March 27 letter furthered those efforts, urging committee leadership to provide full funding for these programs through the fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations process.
Read the letter in its entirety by clicking here.
A coalition of 40 stakeholders representing all segments of the aviation and travel industries sent a letter to congressional leaders in support of the Aviation Funding Stability Act of 2019 (H.R. 1108).
The legislation would provide FAA funding in the event of a government shutdown, enabling the agency to draw from the Airport and Airway Trust Fund (AATF) in the event of a lapse.
"Jobs and economic growth in the industry were threatened as manufacturers, airlines and other operators, and small businesses faced disruption. The effect on the nation’s air transportation system and the workers charged with keeping the system safe was dramatic," the letter reads.
"We find this situation to be unacceptable and we want to work with Congress and the Administration to prevent this from ever happening again," the letter continues. "The legislation is designed to provide a limited, targeted way of ensuring stability for the aviation system and it does not change congressional direction or oversight in any way."
According to the coalition, the AATF currently has a balance of more than $6 billion.
Stay tuned for updates on everything ATEC members need to know as well as ways that you can help the council and the AMTS community.