King Schools, well-known for their dedication to aviation training has introduced a new curriculum in an attempt to alter the direction of the growing aviation mechanic shortage. This new program, “Cleared for Aviation Maintenance,” has the potential to change the future of aviation. As the shortage of aviation mechanics is growing larger than the shortage of pilots, it is expected that 690,000 jobs are needed in the next two decades. Continue reading for more information on the new curriculum and what it could mean for all of aviation!
“We’ve been growing a lot over the last five to 10 years…and it’s been wonderful to do that, but we’ve been within this domain of pilots for a long time,” said CEO Barry Knuttila at a press conference at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, on Thursday. “We had mechanics test prep for the general airframe and powerplant for many years. So we had our toe in the mechanics world.”
“Now, we’ve jumped into the water, gone underwater, and come back up,” he continued. “And we’ve come back up with a curriculum that allows…a school to start up a brand new mechanic school and take mechanics…from zero to turning wrenches with a certificate.”
The Cleared for Aviation Maintenance product is designed for flight schools, colleges, and universities to integrate into their existing A&P programs or establish new ones. With a focus on the new Part 147 requirements and a user-friendly syllabus, the product seamlessly integrates into existing instructional programs. King Schools offers a free concierge service to guide schools and businesses through the setup process.
“We saw a demand that’s there,” Brian Hough, senior vice president of sales and business development, who was instrumental in the development of this program, said at the briefing. “There’s more mechanics needed than there are pilots. If we look at that trajectory, what’s that going to do to us? We’re going to come to a grinding halt because we are falling short of that.”
“There’re maintenance schools that are out there,” he continued, “but they’re just not able to produce [a solution to] the overwhelming demand.”
So he took that idea to the drawing board, asking how we could change that dynamic. “I couldn’t find a commercially-produced syllabus, short of…test prep, which we already had, that would work for multiple entities,” Hough said.
Aviation maintenance schools are relatively sparse, but Hough and the King Schools team identified a solution in the exploding flight school business nationwide. There are aviation education programs established and growing across the U.S., and those schools have fleets of aircraft. Fertile ground for educating and training new A&Ps: but how could the dots be connected? Enter Cleared for Aviation Maintenance, which allows learners to complete their course of training at existing schools.