An aviation maintenance technician (AMT) career might suit you. However, here is what you need to know on job description, duties, education requirements, licensing requirements, salary & employment outlook:
What is an Aviation Maintenance Technician?
An aviation maintenance technician repairs and maintains all types of aircraft, such as planes and helicopters.
The duties of an AMT vary based on what company they work for. They can do anything from general maintenance to specialization in a specific area, like the airframe or powerplant. AMTs are required to diagnose issues, both mechanical and electrical, replace worn out or damaged parts and regularly inspect an aircraft on a maintenance schedule.
Aircraft maintenance schools offer programs you can complete in 18-24 months with hands-on training. The program’s curriculum should be approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). An AMT has to study a “general” set of subjects for at least 1900 hours for subjects relating to General, Airframe and Powerplant.
“General” curriculum studies examples: Electricity, weight and balance, technical drawings, pneumatics, corrosion control, maintenance manuals and federal regulations, especially regarding repair and modification procedures.
Airframe studies examples: Inspection, fasteners, structures (like wood, composite, and sheet metal), welding, assembly, rigging, finishes, atmosphere controls and hydraulics.
Powerplant studies examples: Inspection, engine theories and repair, instruments, electrical, ignition, and fire protection.
Obtaining a FAA Airframe and Powerplant Certification
General rules to be eligible for a mechanic certificate in the U.S.:
- Be 18 years or older
- Able to fluently read, speak, and understand English
- Meet educational or experience requirements
- Pass a set of oral and practical required tests within 24 months
Salary and Employment Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were 137,300 aviation maintenance jobs in 2014. BLS projects job outlook for holders of both Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) certificate to be greater than only holding certification for one of the two. The annual mean wage pay for aviation maintenance technicians (mechanics) was $61,190 as of May 2016.
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:
Other states that will still benefit albeit in a small manner are:
*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 VA, Chesapeake VA, Atlanta – Metro GA, Oakland Metro CA, Dallas –Metro TX, Houston TX, Kansas City MO, Philadelphia PA, and Las Vegas NV campuses.
Open houses, like campus tours, provide you with an opportunity to get information to decide whether or not to apply to a college. In a single visit, you can gather knowledge and impressions to aide you in your final college selection. But how can you make the most out of your visit? Simply by being prepared. Here are some tidbits to keep in mind the next time you attend a college open house:
Why Attend in the First Place?
Source: Getty Images.
Sometimes, the hardest part of picking a college is narrowing down your “top choices” list. Attending a college open house can make picking the right school a lot easier. Apart from this, other reasons to show up include getting a good feel for the campus atmosphere and learning more about the specific program you’re interested in. Here are reasons to attend.
What to Prepare For
It’s important to realize that college open house events are not an example of an everyday campus experience. However, this doesn’t mean that programs are not genuine, just that they are not typical. Expect the following:
- Interviews Aren’t Guaranteed- At a campus where interviews are highly encouraged, you most likely will not have an opportunity to interview on the day of an open house. You will need to revisit campus later. However, the college may decide to offer regional interviews close to you.
- Colleges Make a List and Check it Twice- Colleges monitor who visits their campus and who does not. This means that scheduling a campus visit or attending an open house may offer more benefits to students who takes extra initiative to scope out the campus.
- Each Open House is Unique- Every open house you attend will possess similar features. You can expect to hear from the teaching staff, support staff, as well as current students. Most colleges have the day’s programs outlined online in advance. Identify the subject matter you find most important and follow up with the appropriate resources at the open house.
- Welcome, Welcome, Welcome– Expect a warm welcome from everyone on campus. Staff members will be available and prepared to answer questions from you and your family, so be sure to bring them!
- Network to Expand Your Web- There will be a lot of prospective students attending college open house, making it a great opportunity to interact. Connections made at the open house could become helpful to you in the future.
Questions to Ask
Source: Getty Images.
Talk to more than just the admission staff. Seek a number of students during your tour and ask them what they like and would change about their school. To get the best experience from your visit, prepare thoughtful questions to ask. Here are some examples:
- What academic elements are considered in the admission process and how important are they?
- Is it easy for students to do research with a professor?
- What percentage of my financial need does the school meet?
- What are my chances of landing internship opportunities and jobs?
- What social opportunities are available to students?
More questions here.
Have fun at every open house you attend. Take some time beforehand to prepare and the day of, you’ll be able obtain all the information you need to help decide if that college deserves the top spot in your college line up!
The FAA’s specific rules for flying a drone for recreational purposes are simple to follow. You only need to register your UAV and know a few other restrictions to be on the right side of the law. However, more UAV owners today are seeking training even when they have no intention to pursue an aviation degree in the future. Here are reasons why:
UAV Rules Coming into Effect
The FAA small unmanned aircraft system rule came into effect on August 2016. According to MacLean Insurance Company, more proposed rules are expected to become effective in a few months’ time.
However, the UAS training being offered by AIM won’t get outdated anytime soon. Your training at AIM will prepare you to be certified by the FAA and will comply with regulations. You’ll have the benefit of knowing you are certified to fly your drone under all the regulations likely to be enforced in the near future.
Planning to get an insurance cover for your drone? Don’t be surprised if your insurer asks for your training certificate. At the moment, many insurer companies are lenient about the level of training you have before accepting to cover your drone. However, in the future it’s more likely that you won’t find drone insurance without the necessary level of training.
Lack of Training Content
Only few drone manufacturers sell manuals and instructions that can help you learn how to fly the UAV safely. The rest lack detailed instructions and might not cover all operational questions you may have. You don’t have to rely on these manuals to fly your UAV, fortunately. You can learn how to assemble parts and take care of your drone in case of any problems from a good training course.
Business Opportunities are rising
According to Droneguru.net, it’s possible to build a career with your UAV. In the advertising industry, for example, there are opportunities for someone willing to invest their time with a drone. From simply flying banners with promotional messages in high traffic areas to taking photographs for developing adverts, there’s a future in drone advertising. Other popular industries where you can take your UAV aerial footage work are filmmaking, construction and farming.
Pursue an UAV course and gain skills that will help you fly and take care of your drone with little hassle.
Aviation Institute of Maintenance’s Jet Tech Summer Camp will provide participants a preview into the school’s FAA approved Aviation Maintenance Technician program.
By Brian Stauss
Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM) will be offering a glimpse into the world of aircraft maintenance through its annual Jet Tech Summer Aviation Maintenance Camp at select campuses.
Camp participants will spend time in AIM’s hangars, classrooms, and labs, learning about the basics of aviation maintenance. Topics covered will include aircraft systems and powerplants, ground operations, safety wiring, physics of flight, and much more. This is the perfect opportunity for individuals who are interested in working with their hands. The camp will also provide a preview of the skills aviation maintenance technicians perform after obtaining their certification.
Camp dates and locations are as follows:
Atlanta metro – June 23; 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Houston – June 26 – 30 or July 31 – Aug. 4; 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily
Indianapolis – June 19 – 23; 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Kansas City – June 16 or July 7; 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Philadelphia – July 31; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“Here at AIM, we strive to educate today’s youth about the important field of aviation maintenance,” says Ben Sitton, Campus Executive Director at AIM’s Atlanta metro campus. “Our Jet Tech Summer Camp is an excellent opportunity to do just that…to expose young boys and girls to a potential career path that otherwise may not have ever crossed their minds.”
AIM’s Jet Tech Summer Camp is open to upcoming high school graduates and rising high school seniors. Individuals interested in enrolling into the camp should contact the appropriate campus.
Atlanta metro – (678) 377-5600
Houston – (713) 644-7777
Indianapolis – (317) 243-4519
Kansas City – (816) 753-9920
Philadelphia – (215) 676-7700
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: www.AviationMaintenance.edu.
By Jul DeGeus
Imagine this: Your final paper on ”The History of Cleaning and Corrosion Control” is due tomorrow but you forgot to cite the book you used, and even worse, you forgot the name of the book. You make an emergency trip to the library, but when you walk in, no one is there. A building abandoned, books are scattered everywhere, piled atop of one another with no rhyme or reason in how they are categorized. Will you find the book in enough time to turn in your paper?
Thanks to the hard work and organization skills of librarians, this is an unlikely situation to find yourself in. April 4th is National School Librarian Day and here at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance, we wanted to take the time to recognize some of our all-star librarians:
Rebecca (left) assists a student with homework.
“Rebecca Crosby has been working for AIM Atlanta for nearly 14 years. She is a superstar on campus and we are proud to have her as our librarian. Rebecca became interested in Library Science as a high school student. She took five years of Library Science courses while attending Berkmar High School in Lilburn, GA.
Rebecca began her career at AIM as a receptionist. The campus was based out of a hangar called “Briscoe Field” and had no library. When AIM Atlanta moved into its new campus building nine years ago, Rebecca made the leap to Campus Librarian. Rebecca loves working in the library because she is able to help students and connect with them on a daily basis. Like almost every other librarian, she also loves to read! Rebecca’s favorite book, for now, is “The Notebook” by Nicholas Sparks. “
-AIM Atlanta Staff
“Shout out to the amazing Mrs. Leah Veal, our Librarian and PSI proctor. No matter the task or project, she is always willing to assist wherever she is needed. Even if that means hunting down a missing manual; she will look for it and she will find it. Both students and staff appreciate you and your enthusiasm when helping others. Thank you, Leah, for everything that you do!”
-AIM Chesapeake Staff
“Valerie Harris has worked at AIM Dallas as the campus librarian since 2015. Prior to that, she worked in education for over 25 years. She graduated from The University of Southern Mississippi with a Bachelor’s Degree in Library and Information Science and minored in History. Valerie has improved our library processes and coordination. She is always willing to provide a helping hand to students searching for specific information or material. Thank you for always making sure the library remains a quiet haven for our students to study. “
-AIM Dallas Staff
“Lucero ‘Lucy the Librarian’ Rosales began her career at AIM Houston as a part time receptionist and was promoted to Assistant Librarian shorty after. Lucy is very creative and always willing to help any student or staff member. She currently attends Houston Community College where she is studying pastry arts and plans to open a bistro after college. We’re so proud of all of your hard work, Lucy!”
-AIM Houston Staff
AIM Kansas City
Frederick Douglas Thomas
Aptly named after the famous Frederick Douglass, AIM Kansas City’s Frederick Douglas Thomas is treasure to our school. A man of many titles, Fredrick is the Librarian, Career Services Coordinator, director of FAA test proctoring, and head of the graduation committee. He is a constant rock of support for his students and colleagues, encouraging excellence, honor, integrity and humility. He challenges everyone he interacts with to become their best selves and does it all while looking like a million bucks! Thank you for all that you do!”
-AIM Kansas City Staff
“Karoline received her BA in History from the University of Central Florida and her Masters in Library Science from San Jose State. Karoline became a librarian because, ‘I have a deep love for history and books; this is a career that allows me to fulfill that passion and share it with others.’ We’re lucky that our library is the one you get to share your passion with!”
-AIM Oakland Staff
“Noreen started at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Orlando on January 26, 2015 and plays a dual role. She is the testing proctor in the afternoons and the Evening Library Assistant, accommodating students with their Learning Resource Center needs. Noreen comes from New York, likes to keep busy and ‘loves to help people.’”
“Ruth is the Daytime Library Assistant at the Aviation Institute of Maintenance in Orlando. She started at the campus on May 12, 2016 and ‘loves working with our students.’ Originally from St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Ruth enjoys cooking and singing gospel music in her spare time. “
-AIM Orlando Staff