Albany Airport and HVCC Establish Workforce Development Partnership | New
COLONIE, NY – Officials from Albany International Airport and Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) have announced a new workforce development partnership.
The agreement will aim to create opportunities for well-paying technical careers, while supporting the aviation industry. As part of the announcement on Thursday morning, the airport will house a new aeronautical technology institute and create a school for aeronautical maintenance technicians (AMTS).
“As a leading economic engine for the Capital Region, Albany International Airport is committed to supporting our airlines and our workforce with the establishment of the Hudson Valley Community College Aeronautical Technology Institute” Albany County Airport Authority CEO Philip Calderone said.
“This comprehensive aviation program will inspire new and emerging airlines to service Albany International Airport and attract additional aircraft maintenance facilities as well as their well-paying jobs. Together with HVCC and Albany County, we are committed to ensuring that these new employment opportunities particularly benefit low-income and minority students. This is a critical initiative as we move into a post-pandemic world, ”Calderone explained.
HVCC President Roger Ramsammy also praised the beneficial aspects of the partnership.
“This is a great example of Hudson Valley Community College seeing an educational need in our community and taking action to meet it,” Ramsammy noted.
“When I arrived in Hudson Valley, we met with the leaders of the Albany International Airport and heard their concerns about the need for training in aircraft mechanics. We are very pleased to announce this partnership today, which will not only meet the needs of our airport and the airlines it serves, but also create well-paying careers that will ultimately benefit communities in the Greater Montreal area. the capital, ”Ramsammy said.
Certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to train aircraft mechanics for careers in the airline industry, the AMTS educational institution will be part of the college’s new aviation technology institute. The institute also seeks to offer degree and certificate programs, as well as short-term, non-credit workforce training programs taught by college faculty. Programs and courses will be delivered in Hangar 1, which is expected to provide over 12,000 square feet of learning space.
Up to 40 students are expected to enroll in new aviation programs, and up to 15 incoming students will receive scholarships of up to $ 10,000 from the Hudson Valley Community College Foundation. These scholarships will help recruit students who reside in areas of economic opportunity or who are traditionally under-represented in STEM, as well as military veterans and those who are underemployed or unemployed.
Rensselaer County Manager Steve McLaughlin has expressed his thoughts on his days as a pilot, as well as the importance of the program.
“Some of you may not know that I am a professional pilot by training, I started my career right here at Albany airport. I have probably landed on these runways five or six thousand times, at 12,000 hours and it all started right here at Albany Airport when someone gave me a chance, ”McLaughlin said.
“That’s what it’s going to be about, is training these kids in a highly skilled environment,” McLaughlin continued of the partnership.
“Over 50 percent of commercial pilots in the country are over the age of 55. This same demographics hold true for mechanics and all along the line. So there is a huge need for that,” McLaughlin noted on the need to train the next generation in aviation.
To that end, a 2019-2020 Aviation Technician Training Council pipeline report showed that 33% of airframe and powertrain technicians in the country have reached or are approaching retirement age. The report also states that the industry will need to produce an additional 2,700 mechanics during 2019 production each year to meet U.S. market demand over the next two decades.
The NYS Department of Labor predicts a 15.4% increase in demand for aviation mechanics and service technicians through 2026. Additionally, a survey of regional airlines serving Albany International Airport indicates that each airline expects an average expected need of 10 additional aircraft. mechanics per year over the next five years.
Albany County Director Daniel McCoy also stressed the importance of creating opportunities locally to fill these jobs.
“This innovative program will help fill vacancies with more residents of Albany County and the region, instead of outsourcing other parts of the country. And our county departments will help identify candidates, including veterans and underserved communities, ”McCoy noted. .
In early 2020, Albany International Airport learned from discussing with its airline partners the need for more aircraft mechanics locally. Albany International Airport management contacted Hudson Valley Community College who immediately joined the partnership. At the same time, Albany International Airport learned through one of its signatory airlines that the Champlain Valley Educational Services Board of Cooperative Educational Services (CVES), located in Plattsburgh, had decided to put end of his aeronautical maintenance technician school. Hudson Valley Community College took the opportunity to purchase the majority of the equipment and programs for this program.
In early 2020, HVCC secured $ 1.5 million in funds to purchase equipment and programs from the Champlain Valley Educational Services Board of Cooperative Educational Services (CVES), located in Plattsburgh, which terminated its AMTS. .
Funding came from a 2020-2021 Perkins grant, a $ 500,000 loan from his faculty student association, and a $ 500,000 donation from the Hudson Valley Community College Foundation.
Last fall, HVCC began transporting equipment from CVES to Plattsburgh at Albany International Airport. The CVES program is now being refined to meet Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) Part 147 certification as classrooms and laboratories undergo renovations in Hangar 1. The college is also planning to purchase equipment and materials. additional state-of-the-art supplies, with the goal of achieving FAR Part 147 certification and state approvals to begin training aviation technicians by fall 2022. Several courses and briefings will be held at the airport this fall.