On April 24 to 27, five students from Mohawk Valley Community College’s Airframe and Powerplant program placed seventh among aviation school teams at the 10th annual international Aerospace Maintenance Competition in Orlando, Fla. There were 21 student teams participating from 17 schools, and more than 30 professional teams represented by engineers and technicians from major aircraft manufacturers, maintenance facilities, and the United States military.
MVCC was represented by students Dave Cocca, Joe Jiamarrino, Mitchell Keegan, Isaac Miller, and Brian Schutz, and Assistant Professor Todd Rankins, Adjunct Instructor Chris Johnston, and Instructor Peter Abbe. These MVCC students, with only eight months of training, posted faster overall times than some professional teams including Virgin Galactic, Qantas Airlines, and the United States Army.
Each team was paired with a group of professional mechanics as mentors. MVCC’s paired mentor was Jetstar Airlines, an Australian airline. The Jetstar team took first place in the international category and had the fastest times in several individual categories. At the end of the event they donated nearly $1,000 worth of prizes that they had won to MVCC’s students and discussed the opportunity of future employment. Students also had the chance to network at the accompanying aviation expo, and all participants received informal employment offers from United Airlines and the United States Air Force.
The competition consisted of 26 events with more than 50 teams from across the globe competing for the fastest times. Each team was required to compete in all events including removing and installing wheel and brake assemblies and doing internal inspections of state-of-the-art turbine engines. Each team’s final score was based on total time required to complete the task. Teams were given 15 minutes maximum to complete a task and assessed time penalties for any errors. This allowed teams to be evaluated on actual time, proficiency, and attention to detail. The entire event was live-streamed online for the first time and viewed through 8,000 connections in 37 countries.
MVCC’s Airframe and Powerplant program is the only community college-based aviation maintenance program in New York State and one of only a few one-year programs in the country. During the course of 12 months, students receive 1,905 hours of FAA-approved training (Certificate No. FAR147) that prepares them to sit for the examinations required to be issued the FAA Airframe and Powerplant Certificate. To learn more about the program, visit www.mvcc.edu/aviation, or call 315-338-7826. To learn more about MVCC and its programs, visit mvcc.edu.