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FAA Career Training

AIM Graduate Spotlight – Daniel Mendiola

Posted by on Jan 29, 2019

Daniel Mendiola graduation

Daniel Mendiola celebrates his graduation from the AMT program

Daniel Mendiola first came to Aviation Institute of Maintenance (AIM) Oakland back in 2014. While in the Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) program, he worked as an electrician for his family’s company, Mendiola Home Repair, as well as a pest controller to help make ends meet financially. During his training program at AIM, Daniel maintained a stellar 3.78 GPA. He graduated from the AMT program in 2015 and continued to work towards gaining his A&P license.

Daniel Mendiola conference table

Conference table built by Daniel Mendiola, constructed from wing of an aircraft.

In August 2017, he got a job opportunity to return to AIM as an Aircraft Assembly Technician. In this position, he was able to gain real hands-on experience to further prepare him for the aviation industry. He was the lead tech in charge of disassembling and reassembling aircraft. He also fabricated aircraft cradles and parts to move the aircraft. Other responsibilities included creating a custom welding hood and installing new compressor airlines for the facility. Additional custom-built projects included sound walls for running the aircraft in AIM Oakland’s new facility in Fremont, CA, as well as a conference table built from scratch, using a wooden airplane wing.

Daniel obtained his Powerplant rating in June 2018, and is continuing to study for his Airframe rating. In November of 2018, Boeing came to AIM Fremont and held a presentation, as well as on-site interviews. Daniel interviewed and was offered a position right away. He has since relocated to Renton, Washington, where he now works as an Aircraft Test Technician for Boeing. All of his hard work and determination has paid off and we wish him the best of luck in all of his future endeavors!

AIM Chesapeake Preps for Move by Donating Equipment

Posted by on Jan 23, 2019

AMN Loading

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:

https://www.wavy.com/news/local-news/norfolk/aviation-institute-donates-furnishings-from-former-christian-school-to-city-of-norfolk/1695885362.

AIM Houston Surprises Local School with Donation of Backpacks

Posted by on Nov 7, 2018

By Rita Pradier, AIM Houston Community Outreach Representative

Most of us can remember back-to-school shopping in the weeks before the start of school. New clothes, shoes and, of course, the cool backpack and supplies that your mom told you not to touch. Things have changed and many families don’t have the resources to purchase all of the required school supplies so many weeks in advance. To the rescue – AIM Houston’s “Backpack Attack”.

Donated school supplies waiting to be stuffed into backpacks by AIM Houston.

Donated school supplies waiting to be stuffed into backpacks by AIM Houston.

Aaron Armendariz, Campus Executive Director at AIM Houston, challenged the campus to participate in the project, as a way to give back to the local community. With the promise of 250 backpacks and school supplies on order, each department found a way to help before the challenge deadline. Lucile Gregg Elementary, a Title I school located near the AIM Houston campus, was contacted. The school’s principal, Mr. David Jackson, was given the news of the forthcoming donation.

In the weeks leading up to the deadline, AIM Houston’s National Technical Honor Society approached area stores to donate 1,000 spiral notebook tablets. Soon after, the staff and students joined in to help reach the goal. Classes challenged each other to make sure there would be enough supplies for the backpacks.

The final tally came to 1,973 notebooks donated by students and staff at AIM Houston. At last, it was packing day and all departments lent a hand as supplies were sorted, organized, bundled and placed into the backpacks.

Campus Executive Director Aaron Armendariz poses for a photo with a Lucile Gregg Elementary student as she receives her backpack.

Campus Director Aaron Armendariz poses for a photo with a Lucile Gregg Elementary student as she receives her backpack.

On Tuesday, August 21, 2018 the backpacks were delivered by the campus management team to Principal Jackson and his staff, to be shared with families in need. The students and parents from Lucile Gregg Elementary entered the cafeteria expecting just to meet their classroom teachers. However, they were greeted to a table of backpacks filled with school supplies to kick off the school year.

The AIM team issued the backpacks and posed for pictures with some of the students. It was truly fulfilling to see the children’s’ faces as they came forward. Principal Jackson and his staff thanked us for blessing them with the donation and now consider AIM a community partner. AIM Houston looks forward to collaborating with Lucile Gregg Elementary again in the near future.

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., Fremont, Calif., Orlando, Fla., and Norfolk, Va. Learn more at: www.AviationMaintenance.edu.

AIM Las Vegas Graduate Spotlight: Wendell Gilkey

Posted by on Nov 5, 2018

AIM Las Vegas graduate Wendell Giley

AIM Las Vegas graduate Wendell Gilkey.

A father to three lovely children and a resident of the Las Vegas Valley, Wendell Gilkey was working full-time as a service technician for a local coffee service company before deciding to pursue a career in aviation maintenance.  Upon researching various schools, Wendell elected to attend AIM’s Las Vegas campus and enrolled into the Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) program.  In order to continue working and support his family, Wendell attended night classes.  He successfully graduated and moved quickly through the testing process in obtaining his Airframe and Powerplant certifications from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Upon completion of his training program, Wendell stated, “The instructors here at AIM Las Vegas were all extremely helpful.  When I think about all of the work that I put in and the opportunities that are ahead of me, I feel so gratified.  I know that my confidence and determination will serve me well in job interviews.”

Sky Combat Ace’s Extra 330LC.

Having built his home and raising a family in Las Vegas, he desired to stay in the valley area in securing an A&P Mechanic position.  Gilkey’s wishes came to fruition when Sky Combat Ace (SCA) offered him a position as a maintenance technician. Sky Combat Ace offers unique flight experiences, with patrons having the opportunity to ride along with highly trained fighter pilots as they perform aerial aerobatics, and even provides guests the opportunity to take control of the aircraft, if they desire.  The aircraft they fly are the Extra330LC, and the Super Decathlon8KCAB.  These planes require highly skilled mechanics to ensure the safety of the pilots and the customers of SCA.

Wendell accepted Sky Combat Ace’s offer and is now employed as a FAA certified A&P mechanic Wendell says, “I love what I do! I couldn’t have done it without the help from the team at AIM Las Vegas.”

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., Fremont, Calif., Orlando, Fla., and Norfolk, Va. Learn more at: www.AviationMaintenance.edu.

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: www.AviationMaintenance.edu.