One of the benefits of working at a university that has aviation programs is that I was invited to tour the new maintenance hangarthat American Airlines opened at O’Hare International Airport.
What was even more impressive than the facility, was American’s genuine desire to build a stronger pipeline to hire aviation maintenance technicians. The shortage of these highly skilled professionals is hitting the aviation industry and threatening their future progress. These shortages will become even more pronounced as a significant percentage of their workforce reaches retirement age in the next 5 -10 years.
For a high school student who is good at math, has strong analytical skills, and enjoys working with their hands, a career as an aviation technician could be very satisfying and lucrative. Salaries exceed $100,000 within 2 -3 years of hire and include benefit packages that are impressive and allow for travel around the world.
As executives from American emphasized, it has become a very sophisticated profession. Today, it has a greater emphasis on interfacing with software programs, electronics, engineering, and physics. If you have a student who fits this profile, this is an area they may want to consider.