Within the field of Aviation, there are a number of careers available. Different jobs entail different education paths, so it is important to decide which career appeals most before entering technical training or college. The list of jobs is wide:
- Aerospace Engineers
- Aircraft Assembly
- Aircraft Engine Inspectors
- Aircraft Mechanic
- Airline Customer Service
- Airplane Designers
- Air Traffic Control
- Aviation Administration
- Baggage Handlers
- Emergency Crew
- Flight Attendants
- Helicopter Mechanics
- Runway Crew
- Security Officers
Getting the Education You Need for a Career in the Aviation Field
Schooling is required for some aviation careers, but others require little more than on-the-job training and a high school diploma. Each job requires different tasks. For example, a flight attendant goes through a flight attendant training program and then must be willing to fly from area to area regularly. Flight attendants spend more time on a plane than in their own home or apartment. They handle waiter/waitressing tasks, in-flight safety instructions, customer complaints, passenger control, check-in, and more. An airline customer service representative, on the other hand, usually receives on the job training and is required to make reservations, handle telephone or live complaints or questions, check-in baggage, and other duties related to getting a passenger onto a plane.
One of the most rewarding careers within the aviation field, however, is that of an airframe and powerplant technician. Even better, jobs in this field are quite plentiful.
Working as an Airframe and Powerplant Technician
Throughout the world, airframe and powerplant technicians inspect planes before flights ensuring that the plane is in top condition and working properly. This makes the airframe and powerplant technician one of the more important jobs in the field of aviation.
To prevent airline crashes, all airlines must be thoroughly inspected before the flight. Everything from landing gear to engines to the mechanical controls are checked to ensure they are in prime condition and will not fail during a flight. While the occasional accident does occur, airframe and powerplant technicians are the best change to prevent catastrophes and quickly fix problems so that flights are not delayed for incredible amounts of time.
To become an airframe and powerplant technician, a number of courses are required.
- Aircraft or Helicopter Theory and Operations – Understanding how aircraft or helicopter works
- Airframe and Powerplant Fuel Systems – Proper techniques used when fueling aircraft and how to inspect the fueling system and fuel lines
- Airframe Assembly
- Airplane Maintenance – Step by step instruction in handling an in – depth inspection of a plane prior to a start
- Avionic Circuits – Learning how an avionic circuit board is assembled
- Avionic Regulations – Learning all the rules and regulations involved in avionics that pilots and flight crews must follow, includes laws regarding pre – flight maintenance and inspections
- Communication Systems – Inspecting and repairing, if necessary, the communication system on an airplane or helicopter
- Engine Repairs – Simple and extensive repairs to an airplane or helicopter’s engine system. Usually involves learning how to build an engine from scratch
- Environmental Controls – Learn how to prevent engine ice – ups or other environmental issues that can cause engine failure
- Gas Turbine Engines – Learn how to repair and inspect gas turbine engines
- General Maintenance – How to perform routine oil changes and routine engine maintenance
- Helicopter Maintenance – Specialized maintenance procedures that are mandatory in helicopters
- Hydraulics and Landing Gears – Learn how to inspect the airplane or helicopter’s hydraulic system and the landing gears
- Ignition Systems – Steps for inspecting an airplane or helicopter’s ignition system
- Instrument Panel – Understanding the function of all aircraft instrument panels including why they are used and how to troubleshoot problems with their functioning
- Lubricating Systems – Maintenance and inspection, including repairing, the airplane or helicopter’s lubrication system
- Materials, Processes, and Welding – How to make general repairs to the airplane’s form, includes how to weld metal, clean metal, and check all hardware for rust and corrosion
- Navigation Systems – Inspect and repair the airplane or helicopter’s navigation system
- Pneumatics – Inspect, assemble, and repair the pneumatics system
- Principles of Electricity – Understanding all circuits, including series – parallel circuits, parallel circuits, AC/DC circuits, and the Ohms laws
- Propellers – Learn how to inspect, repair, assemble, and disassemble the propellers
- Reading Blueprints – How to read for design an engine’s blueprint
- Record Keeping – How to maintain proper records for all airplane or helicopter inspections
- Structural Repairs – Use sheet metal and welding skills to repair damage to the airplane or helicopter’s exterior and interior
- Weight and Balance – Inspecting aircraft for safe loads to prevent an overweight plane or helicopter from taking off
- Working with Sheet Metal – Principles to reforming a plane or helicopter’s exterior using sheet metal for repairs
Following this intensive program, students are expected to prepare for and then successfully pass the GROL exam (FCC’s General Radiotelephone Operations License) before one can take on work as an airframe and powerplant technician. Due to the extreme importance in doing a job correctly, it is important for all aviation airframe and powerplant technicians to be licensed and well trained.
Are you interested in a career in aviation? Take a look at our list of schools in California offering avaiation programs.