Today, the Federal Aviation Administration published details surrounding the long-awaited aviation maintenance grant program, an initiative created by Congress in the 2018 FAA reauthorization bill. Once implemented, applicants may apply for grants of up to $500,000; funds can be used to support projects aimed at increasing the number of individuals that choose aviation technical careers. Congress appropriated $5 million per year, through FY 2023.
Under the proposed guidance, funding can be used to establish new educational programs, purchase equipment, improve existing programs, establish scholarships or apprenticeships, support outreach initiatives, or to increase career opportunities in economically disadvantaged geographic areas.
While part 147 certificate holders are not specifically identified as an eligible applicant, any accredited institution of higher education, high school, or secondary school may apply. (ATEC believes the definition encompasses the entire part 147 community, please let us know if that does not hold true for your institution.)
While partnership with co-applicants are not required, the agency is encouraging collaborative submissions in an effort to satisfy congressional intent.
The notification and request for comment comes in advance of a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO), which will publish at www.grants.gov around mid November and remain open for 60 days. Additional NOFOs would be published for each funded fiscal year thereafter.
The FAA reauthorization bill created a mirror program to expand the pilot workforce. Information on both the pilot and technician workforce grant programs is available at www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/ang/grants/awd/.
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.