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AIM Chesapeake Preps for Move by Donating Equipment

Posted by on Jan 23, 2019

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Desks, bookshelves, and other equipment that were donated will be used in facilities throughout Norfolk.

Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM) has purchased a new facility on East Little Creek Road, in Norfolk, Virginia. AIM Chesapeake plans to relocate to this facility later this summer.

The building, once Calvary Christian School, had become a repository for school equipment and books suited to children.  AIM invited the City of Norfolk and REACH, Inc. (Reading Enriches All Children) out to collect these items to give back to the community they will soon serve.

Employees from the City of Norfolk were on hand to load trucks and vans with desks, bookshelves, and other equipment that will be useful in recreation centers and other community facilities throughout the city.  They were joined later by the Executive Director of REACH, Jennifer Goff. REACH was interested in the wealth of reading materials.  REACH, established in 1998, focuses on literacy and education, specifically for at-risk and impoverished youth in the Hampton Roads area.

AMN Norfolk Mayor

City of Norfolk Mayor Kenneth Alexander speaks with AIM Chesapeake Campus Executive Director Bruce Jones.

Also on site was Norfolk Mayor Kenneth Alexander, who gave a brief statement about AIM’s contribution.

“We are excited about this wonderful gift.  These are high- quality furniture and fixtures.  Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Mr. Yagen, and Dr. English are great corporate citizens and continue to give back to the cities and communities where they have career education centers.  This is a continuation of their generosity . . . [This equipment] will be used for our youth, for their growth and development in our recreation centers, as well as for our Community Services board.”

What’s Next?

AMN Books

AIM is continuing to look for suitable homes for the remaining furnishings and materials that remain.

AIM has donated quite a bit of equipment already, but still has much to give.  Janis Schoonmaker, Regional Director of Operations said, “We are reaching out to other organizations within the city.  We hope to be able to donate to those individuals who will benefit most.”

Over the coming weeks, AIM will work toward finding suitable homes for the remaining furnishings and materials, before transforming the building into their flagship campus.

For local news coverage, please see:

AIM Chesapeake Student Honored with Rotary Club Scholarship

Posted by on Oct 22, 2018

By Megan Lewis, AIM Chesapeake Veteran Affairs Officer

Joel English (left), Nicole Cain and Doug Davis (right).

“I knew, at six years old, when I grew up I was going to be around anything that could fly. I don’t know if I’m a ‘grown up’ yet, but I feel like I’m living out my dream.”

This was written by Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM) Chesapeake student, Nicole Cain, as part of her essay for a Rotary Club scholarship application. Nicole enrolled at AIM earlier this year after getting out of the Navy, where she worked on SH-60S helicopters.

The Rotary Club of Chesapeake, Virginia generously wanted to provide one local AIM student a $500 scholarship to pursue their education at the school. This was the first time they had offered a scholarship to a vocational/technical program individual. Several students turned in their applications and Nicole’s phenomenal essay was chosen out of all of the great submissions.

On September 12th the Rotary Club hosted a luncheon to award Nicole the scholarship. To her surprise, Rotary President, Doug Davis, presented her with a $1,000 check to support her educational dreams! Dr. Joel English, Vice President of Operations for AIM, announced that with AIM’s Scholarship Match program, Nicole would receive $2,000 total towards her schooling. It was a wonderful event, celebrating a dedicated student at AIM. Congratulations Nicole and best of luck in your pursuit of living out your dreams!

About Aviation Institute of Maintenance

Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM) is a network of aviation maintenance schools with campuses coast-to-coast across the United States and headquarters located in Virginia Beach, Va. AIM students are trained to meet the increasing global demands of commercial, cargo, corporate and private aviation employers. AIM graduates are eligible to take the FAA exams necessary to obtain their mechanic’s certificate with ratings in both Airframe and Powerplant. AIM’s campuses are located in the following major metro areas: Atlanta, Philadelphia, Dallas, Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Washington, D.C., Kansas City, Mo., Oakland, Calif., Orlando, Fla., and Norfolk, Va. Learn more at:

Youth from City of Norfolk Summer Camp Make Special Trip to AIM Chesapeake

Posted by on Aug 28, 2018

Any parent knows that finding their children activities to keep them busy during the dog days of summer can be quite an ordeal.  To help parents, The City of Norfolk Recreation, Parks and Open Space (RPOS) offers a number of youth camps throughout the summer. One of these camps are the Norview Navigators.

The Norview Navigators camp, now in its third year of existence, is designed for older campers (ages 13-16).  It is the only teen summer camp offered by the City of Norfolk.  The goal of the camp is to expose youth to things that they would otherwise not get to experience. As a part of the camp, participants go on a number of field trips. Two of these trips happened to be to the Aviation Institute of Maintenance’s (AIM) campus in Chesapeake, VA.

The first of these trips occurred on July 27th, with camp participants learning about the fundamentals of flight/aeronautics and some of the practical applications of those fundamentals.  As the day continued, the youth were introduced to drone technology. The teens got to sit down and take control of a drone through AIM’s drone simulator program. Afterwards, the day wrapped up with a live demonstration of a drone flight.

“The staff at AIM were awesome,” says Markia Mickles, Recreation Specialist with Norfolk’s RPOS.  “They kept our group engaged with great hands on activities.”

The Navigators returned to the AIM campus on Friday, August 3rd for an introduction into aircraft maintenance. Campers received a brief lesson on aircraft safety standards and then were able to get down and dirty with hands-on projects in metal fabrication, aircraft tire and wheel assemblies, and aircraft inspections.

“Our campers learned a lot about aircraft and the work that goes on behind the scenes on a day-to-day basis to prepare an aircraft for flight,” Mickles continued. “The Norview Navigators want to extend their thanks to AIM and look forward to working with the school again in the future.”

Instruct the Instructor: ‘At the Cross Roads’ Community Education Conference Recap

Posted by on Apr 24, 2018

Written by Drew Schnaath, Jul DeGeus and Esperanza Poquiz

Faculty and staff from The Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Centura College, and Tidewater Tech met with colleagues and industry specialists to enrich themselves, their campuses, and become better community leaders and more effective educators. On March 14th, leadership and instructors converged in Falls Church, VA to attend the annual Education Conference.

Left to right: Vice President Joel English, Damon Cook, Vice President Mike Busjahn and Nate Wade.

“This year’s theme centered around the intersection of education and community, how our schools work together with their respective communities,” said Dr. Mary Urbanski. “We believe in cultivating our school families, the greater communities surrounding our schools, and our faculty.” These relationships foster collaboration, integrity, and innovation, which benefits students, employers and the communities involved:

Centura Columbia hosted a three part Rock that Interview series of events, leading up to their Career Fair. The sessions educated those who attended on the following subjects: Writing your cover letter, creating your resume, collecting references and building your portfolio.

AIM Atlanta, AIM Chesapeake and AIM Manassas ‘drifted’ from aviation maintenance to automotive, as each campus hosted a Car Show & Open House. Automotive enthusiast learned a thing or two touring the hangars, while Aviation Maintenance Technicians (AMTs) admired the maintenance and upgrades of the vehicles that cruised onto the campus.

In September, members of the Hampton Roads campus branches partook in the organization and volunteering of the Safe House Half Marathon and 5k. 100% of the proceeds of this race went towards building a “safe house”- a haven for orphans that are at risk of being sold into sex slavery.

Centura Norfolk partnered with the City of Norfolk’s Fire-Rescue Department to develop an academic preparation training program for new recruits of the Fire-Rescue Academy. This free of charge program aims to help refresh the basic knowledge a participant will need to be successful in the Fire-Rescue Academy, as well as provides additional tutoring to ensure each recruit has the tools they need to succeed.

Tidewater Tech connected with the community’s strong military presence by holding a car wash and yard sale to benefit the crew members of the USS Eisenhower. Chief Petty Officer selectees from the vessel worked alongside Tidewater Teach staff members to make sure that every car that came for a wash was in ship shape!

For Christmas, AIM Indianapolis decked the halls with charity organizations, Bearded Villains and Bad Apple Offroad, to collect gifts for Toys for Tots. The holiday event gave families the chance to come to the campus and enjoy food, music and fun, while raising donations for a great cause!

Conference attendees heard from several well-known speakers, including Dr. Michael E. Wooten from the Department of Education, Cindy Bridges Milford, Enterprise Digital Specialist at Cengage and Dale Dworak, a 25-year industry veteran in business technology solutions. Campus educators were also able to learn from text book publishers such as Cengage, McGraw Hill Education, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Pearson and F.A. Davis Company. Each speaker offered valuable insight into their experiences in education, business, leadership, management, and even the technology that powers these institutions and ideas.

In addition to the veritable wealth of information, our faculty had the chance to meet and network with colleagues from our other brands and campuses. Jon Cason explained “Our goal is to foster community, both inside and outside our organization. Collaboration is important for our schools as they continue to grow.”

Drone Industry Outlook

Posted by on Sep 26, 2017

The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) states, “the drones are coming.” And with them, they are going to bring jobs as well as an economic impact due to the changes in the drone industry, especially with the introduction of part 107 by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Drone Industry Growth

Business Insider defines drones as “aerial vehicles that can fly autonomously or be piloted by a remote individual.” Using this definition, they expect:

  • Sales to go past $12 billion in 2021,a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.6% from 2016’s $8.5 billion
  • Consumer drones alone to hit 29 million in 2021, a CAGR of 31.3%
  • 805,000 in 2021 enterprise drones, a CAGR of 51% from 2016’s 102,600

The military drone market is mature with the Department of Defense (DOD) looking to increase its more than 7,000 drones in 2012 by 50 more at an estimated cost of $2.9 billion.

Estimated Economic Impact

The FAA 2015 prediction deadline for integrating drones into the national civilian airspace forecasted:

  • $82.1 billion in economic impact by 2025
  • 100,000 jobs by 2025

Who Will Buy Drones?

In a report by Markets and Markets, North America leads the forecast by 45% as the dominant regional market. Domestically in the US, agricultural drone applications will dwarf all others accounting for $75.6 billion of the total economic impact by 2025, according to AUVSI. Government facilities follow up by $3.2 billion while all other sectors combed will take up $3.2 billion of the economic impact.

Based on application: Aerial photography and remote sensing is expected to lead.

Based on duration of service: Short duration service is expected to lead.

Drone Economy Among States

AUVSI observes that the drone economy will not be spread in an even manner. The domestic drone boom will hugely benefit:

  • California*
  • Washington
  • Texas*
  • Florida*
  • Arizona

Other states that will still benefit albeit in a small manner are:

  • Oklahoma
  • Indiana*
  • Ohio

*These states are home to AIM: San Francisco Bay, California – Metro, Houston, Texas, Dallas, Texas – Metro, Orlando, Florida – Metro and Indianapolis, Indiana.

Small Model Hobbyists Drone Growth Prediction

The FAA predicts the hobbyists’ fleet to more than triple in size from 1.1 million vehicles in 2016 to more than 3.5 million in 2021. This represents a CAGR of 26.4%.

The drone industry is expected to grow. Take Aviation Institute of Maintenance’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems course to become a part of this industry. This course is offered at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance – Manassas VAChesapeake VAAtlanta – Metro GAOakland Metro CA, Dallas –Metro TX, Houston TX, Kansas City MO, Philadelphia PA, and Las Vegas NV campuses.

Job Opportunities for Drone Operators

Posted by on Aug 8, 2017

By Esperanza Poquiz & Jul DeGeus

When Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), or drones, were first introduced, they were commonly known as expensive toys that were used to race and fly for enjoyment. Agile and small enough to fit into tight spaces, operators quickly realized they could explore alternate ways to use drones to their advantage. And so, drones were quickly integrated into the workforce, providing assistance and efficiency to select industries. Here are a few:

  • Photography –Using drones, photographers are able to get aerial photographs. This is an advantage as it allows the photographer to capture an image without disrupting the moment. These sky-high snapshots are a great way for beginners to set their portfolio apart from the rest. Whether it’s shooting for weddings, corporate events or just artistic curiosity, drone photography has become a popular request. Even real estate agencies look to drone operator photographers to shoot from above ground and to get a 360° view their properties.

  • Company Inspections and Surveillance – A variety of different types of properties require maintenance and inspections on a on a daily basis. There are facilities that prove to be too dangerous to inspect manually, so instead of having an inspector assess the property, companies enlist the aid of drones to access the area. Additionally, drones enable companies, like wind farms or constructions sites, to survey the land for design.
  • Films- Always wanted to be a part of filming a big blockbuster hit? Cinematography, like parts featured in movies such as Skyfall, Jurassic World and Captain America: Civil War, sometimes require shots to be filmed by drones. If Hollywood is not your scene but you still have a passions for filming, videographers use drones to capture events like weddings, documentaries and commercials.
  • First Responders – Drones are supporting our community heroes by feeding rescuers live video streams that allow them to assess situations to come up with the safest plan before going into a hostile environment. First responders use drone operators to help locate people who are missing in an area that is too large to cover by foot, while fire fighters and police assign drones with the task of detecting people in danger and finding the safest path in life-threatening situations.
  • Deliveries-Large companies, like Walmart, Amazon and Google, are testing out idea of using drone operators for delivery services. This feature could hasten the delivery process of online orders. Instead of waiting days for a package to arrive, the consumer could receive the package in hours.

  • Drone Racing- What once started as a casual pastime, drone racing has become a popular tech sport. Drone operating teams enter competitions for cash prizes and companies have given the winners of these matches sponsorships and contracts to continue racing for money.

If this has sparked your interest check out our Unmanned Aircraft Systems course to help you get started towards your career!