Have you ever dreamed of working in the exciting field of aviation but weren’t sure where to start? Aviation Institute of Maintenance is one of the top schools for aviation maintenance training and can help launch you into an in-demand career. In this article, we’ll explore the programs offered at AIM, what skills you can learn, career opportunities after graduation, student experiences, and more. By the end, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of why AIM is a premier choice for aviation maintenance education.
Why Choose A Career in Aviation Maintenance?
Before diving into the specifics of AIM, it’s important to understand why a career in aviation maintenance is so appealing. Here are a few key reasons:
- In-demand skills. As the aviation industry continues to grow globally, the need for aircraft mechanics and maintenance technicians is also increasing. Employment in this field is projected to grow 7% over the next decade, creating thousands of new job opportunities. Having maintenance training from a reputable school like AIM gives you an edge in pursuing these in-demand jobs.
- Travel opportunities. As an aircraft mechanic or maintenance technician, you’ll have the chance to work on planes that travel all over the world. Some career paths even allow you to travel internationally yourself! You could find yourself working in exciting locations like Europe, Asia, Africa and more.
- Great pay. Aircraft mechanics and technicians earn higher-than-average salaries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for aircraft mechanics and service technicians is over $63,000, with the highest 10% earning over $90,000. As you gain certifications and experience, your earnings potential increases significantly.
- Career variety. There are many specializations within aviation maintenance from commercial jets to helicopters, general aviation to space vehicles. You can choose a niche you find most interesting. Some mechanics focus solely on engines, avionics, hydraulics or composites. There’s plenty of room to grow your skills in different areas.
Does working with cutting-edge aircraft and aviation technology in a well-paying, growing industry appeal to you? Aviation maintenance may be the perfect career path to explore. Now let’s look at how AIM can help prepare you for success.
Meet the Aviation Institute of Maintenance
Founded in 1981, Aviation Institute of Maintenance has campuses located across the United States including in Florida, Texas, North Carolina and Mississippi. AIM prides itself on providing hands-on training using industry-current equipment and technologies. Here are a few key facts about AIM:
- Accreditations: AIM is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and approved for student financial aid programs by the U.S. Department of Education.
- Curriculum: Programs cover Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) certification along with various specializations approved by the FAA. Classrooms have real equipment for students to practice on.
- Instructors: All instructors have years of experience working as aircraft mechanics themselves. This real-world experience translates directly into actionable lessons.
- Partnerships: Strong industry ties allow students access to internships, campus tours and job recruitment from major airlines, manufacturers and MROs. Companies like Delta, United, JetBlue, Boeing and more regularly visit AIM.
- Graduate outcomes: Over 90% of graduates from AIM’s Aviation Maintenance programs find jobs within 6 months of completing their training. Many land positions with the companies that recruited them on campus.
Does hands-on learning with experienced instructors and career support from top aviation employers appeal to your learning style? Let’s explore the programs at AIM in more detail.
Programs for Every Stage of Your Aviation Career
AIM understands that students come from different backgrounds and career stages. That’s why they offer certificate, associate and bachelor’s degree programs to accommodate various experience levels and goals. Here are the core options:
Aviation Maintenance Technician Certificate Programs
For those looking to enter the field, these certificates are the quickest path to obtaining your Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) certifications. Two options:
- Airframe Technician Certificate (10 months): Covers all FAA-approved airframe curriculum and prepares students to take the airframe portion of the A&P exam.
- Powerplant Technician Certificate (10 months): Focuses on powerplant systems and readies students for the powerplant section of the A&P test.
Students who complete both certifications become eligible for the combined A&P license recognized worldwide. Certificate programs are eligible for VA benefits and student aid.
Associate of Applied Science in Aircraft Maintenance Technology
This 2-year degree combines general education coursework with the entire A&P training. Students graduate with a more well-rounded education and are able to:
- Perform maintenance, inspections and repairs on aircraft and components
- Obtain the General and Airframe & Powerplant FAA certifications
- Gain critical thinking and communication skills for management roles
The AAS also allows those with prior college credits or work experience to leverage them at AIM.
Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics
For students aiming even higher, the Bachelor’s program adds advanced business and leadership courses on top of the AAS curriculum. The B.S. prepares graduates to:
- Advance into aircraft inspection authorization roles
- Become a quality control specialist, maintenance supervisor or assistant chief inspector
- Pursue management positions in aviation throughout the industry
Both the AAS and B.S. equip students to be future leaders in aircraft maintenance and related fields.
No matter your experience level, AIM has a program designed to get your aviation maintenance career off the ground. Let’s delve into campus experiences next.
The AIM Student Experience
When considering schools, it’s important to understand the actual student experience on campus. Here’s what life as an AIM student entails:
Hands-On Training Labs
AIM prides itself on offering real-world training. Labs house operational engines, flight simulators, landing gear systems and more for students to practice their skills. The focus is on learning through doing versus lectures alone.
Dedicated Student Support
Advisors are available to assist with everything from enrolling to career services. Tutoring, mentoring and disability resources ensure all students succeed. Technical support staff also help maintain equipment.
Industry Tours and Internships
Campus visits from major employers provide a glimpse into potential careers. Students have opportunities for 150-hour internships to gain real experience and make valuable contacts. Many land jobs this way.
Active Professional Associations
Groups like the Society of Aircraft maintenance Engineers (SAME) and Women in Aviation help connect students to the larger aviation community. Clubs organize networking events, site visits and service projects.
Convenient Housing Options
On-campus housing or nearby apartments make student life easy. Meal plans and transportation services eliminate many daily hassles associated with attending college.
From industry-caliber labs and learning resources to career support and networking avenues, AIM provides everything needed to launch an aviation career. Now let’s explore where graduates end up after commencement.
Successful Careers Take Off After Graduation
With over 90% of graduates employed within 6 months, it’s clear AIM delivers on career preparation and job placement. Here are just some of the employers regularly recruiting AIM talent:
- Major Airlines: Delta Air Lines, United, American, Southwest Airlines
- Private Aviation: NetJets, FlexJet, Meridian, Magellan Jets
- Manufacturers: Boeing, Airbus, Gulfstream, Cessna, Embraer
- MROs: GE Aviation, AAR Corp, ST Engineering, StandardAero
- Government: U.S. Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard
Beyond blue-chip names, regional and charter airlines, private shops and international opportunities also await globally. AIM even operates an alumni network to foster ongoing career support.
Some of the most common entry-level roles include:
- Aircraft Mechanic
- Maintenance Technician
- Avionics Installer
- Composite Technician
- Engine Specialist
- Landing Gear Mechanic
- Sheet Metal Mechanic
With experience, specialists can become supervisors, inspectors or managers. And AIM education transfers should students ever want to transition to engineering or operations down the line. The sky truly is the limit after completing your training!
By now you’re getting a good sense of why AIM graduates enjoy excellent career placement and mobility. But no doubt you still have some pressing questions – so let’s dive into a FAQ segment!
FAQs: Answering Your Top Questions
As you consider signing up for aviation training, questions are sure to arise. Let’s answer a few of the most common queries regarding AIM:
What is the class/teacher ratio at AIM?
Classroom sizes average around 25 students to ensure adequate personal attention from instructors. In lab settings, that ratio is closer to 15:1 for optimal hands-on learning and safety.
Do you need prior aviation experience to enroll?
No previous industry experience is required to enroll in AIM programs. The certificate courses are designed for those brand new to aviation maintenance. All that’s needed is a high school diploma or GED. AIM will provide all the technical training you need from the ground up.
How long does it take to complete the programs?
- Certificate programs take 10 months each to complete
- The Associate of Applied Science degree typically takes 2 years (4 semesters)
- The Bachelor’s in Aeronautics runs 4 years if attending full-time
All programs can be accelerated some if attending summer semesters as well.
What is the job placement rate for AIM graduates?
AIM boasts an impressive job placement rate of over 90% for graduates. Many students secure positions before even graduating through on-campus recruitment events and internships. The aviation industry experiences consistent growth and AIM alumni are highly sought after by top employers worldwide.
What kind of financial aid is available?
AIM is eligible to participate in many state and federal financial aid programs including Pell Grants, student loans, and some veterans benefits. Scholarships from AIM itself are also awarded based on academic merit and financial need. Speaking to an enrollment advisor can help outline all the options available for making your education affordable.
How much does AIM training cost?
Program costs vary depending on length, location, credits transferred, housing selected, and other factors. On average, certificate programs range $24,000-$28,000 while the Associate degree may total $42,000-$47,000 without factoring in aid or scholarships received. The Bachelor’s degree runs around $80,000 for the full 4 years including housing and fees.
I hope these FAQs have answered many of your pressing questions! Don’t hesitate to contact an enrollment representative if any other topics come to mind.
Launching a Career with Endless Possibilities
As you can see, Aviation Institute of Maintenance provides everything needed to set students up for future success through excellent instruction, industry support, hands-on experience and career services. Graduates enjoy an aviation career that offers:
- Work with modern aircraft technologies on the cutting edge of innovation
- Opportunity to travel domestically and internationally
- Above-average earning potential and room for growth
- Diverse specializations to explore various areas of passion
- Job stability within the consistently growing aviation industry
Whether you dream of maintaining private jets, working for an airline, or advancing into quality control roles, AIM delivers the training and credentials to achieve your goals. With programs tailored for different experience levels and career stages, there is an education solution for every aspiring aviation professional.
Are you ready to take the first step toward a rewarding career with endless possibilities? Contact an enrollment advisor at AIM to discuss their program options and how to get started today. The future is yours for the taking – all you need is the right skills and training. At Aviation Institute of Maintenance, your journey takes flight!