New Bill Aims To Modernize Aircraft Maintenance Training

Dec 18, 2019

Aircraft in various states of repair at Rock Valley College's Aviation Career Education Center.
Credit Chase Cavanaugh

Improving aviation maintenance education is the focus of a new measure in Congress.

Current law says students have to learn a very specific set of subjects in their programs.  But critics say the law hasn’t caught up with technological advancements in the industry.  Ryan Goertzen is the vice president of Maintenance Workforce Development at AAR. The company partnered with Rock Valley College in Rockford to create an employee pipeline. He said the bill would give these schools greater flexibility in what subjects they can teach.

“Schools were very limited from a time perspective of what they could add to the curriculum because they had to do 1,900 hours based upon this old rule.”

The bill was introduced by Illinois Democrats Cheri Bustos in the House and Senator Tammy Duckworth. It has also attracted bipartisan support from several Republicans. These include Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe and Alaska Representative Don Young.