DCC Awarded FAA Grant to Support Aviation Maintenance Technician Program

Dec 17, 2021--Dutchess Community College has been awarded $450,000 by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) through the Aviation Workforce Development (AWD) Aviation Maintenance Technical Workers grant program. The grant will support DCC’s efforts to generate and increase interest and prepare students to pursue aviation maintenance careers. It is also expected to provide essential resources to support expanded outreach and the program’s long-term sustainability.

Titled the Falcons Take Flight project, DCC’s grant application was submitted in March as part of the College’s efforts to develop and implement a long-term, sustainable talent pipeline for the recruitment, education, certification and employment of aviation maintenance technicians (AMTs).

The grant will support a multipronged approach to enroll 100 students over an 18-month performance period, starting in 2022. It will also support retention and completion efforts for students enrolled in the College’s AMT degree and certificate program.

In particular, the grant will support:

- Scholarships for students to reduce the burden of student loans and overcome financial barriers related to program cost.

- An AMT recruitment coach to head up outreach efforts to engage middle, secondary and post-secondary school students in the broad range of educational opportunities and careers in the aviation maintenance industry. The coach will also assist members of the Armed Forces and New York State veterans in transitioning to careers in aviation maintenance. The grant will also support weekend experiential events for select high school students who show an interest in the aviation career field.

- An AMT pathways specialist to develop a long-term sustainable network of aviation industry partners, who will be tapped to facilitate educational workshops for current and prospective AMT students and participate in career panels, open houses and events at DCC@HVR Airport’s Aviation Education Center. The specialist will also explore and develop apprenticeships or experiential opportunities for AMT students and graduates, and provide career services and job placement support. Additionally, the specialist will facilitate program sponsorships and scholarship funds for AMT students. 

- Marketing materials and activities that promote the AMT program, including collateral material, digital advertising and content creation, special events and promotional events. 

DCC’s AMT program was launched in early fall 2021 with an inaugural cohort of 17 students. The winter 2021 cohort, which began in mid-December, included 15 students, bringing the total number in the program to 32. While most students in the program hail from Dutchess County – almost 47% – it also attracts student attention from New York City and other parts of the Hudson Valley. 

The program has a broad appeal to all age groups. The program’s student body currently includes 66% nontraditional (21 and over) and 34% traditional (20 years old and younger). 

The College provides rigorous academic support and other wraparound services to promote student success, such as tutoring.

The Aviation Education Center at DCC@HVR Airport, which opened in June 2021, is a state-of-the-art FAA-certified part 147 AMT school. Graduates of the 12-month intensive program are well-prepared to enter the high-demand, high-wage aviation maintenance career field. A spring cohort will begin in April 2022.  

For more information about DCC’s AMT program, visit the website.