ATEC News: December 2019
A Year in Review: Workforce issues take center stage
While workforce issues have long been with us, the ever-increasing shortage of technical personnel took center stage this year starting with an FAA Workforce Summit which crystalized the challenges ahead for the industry. The year culminated with full congressional funding for the workforce grant program mandated by the FAA Reauthorization Act. 
“This has been a year of significant action for aviation education,” said ATEC Executive Director Crystal Maguire. “We made wide-spread legislative and regulatory progress because of the aviation community's decision to join together, and the direct engagement of our members.” 
Earlier this week, House and Senate unveiled the FY 2020 appropriations calling for $5 million per year for each of the aviation maintenance and pilot training grant programs . ATEC members engaged with elected leaders to get the legislation passed. Once implemented, schools and industry will have more workforce development funding opportunities .
The victory comes on the heels of significant progress on other issues, such as the continued push to reform part 147 training regulations, which are slowly making their way through the FAA. This summer, ATEC was joined by 13 other aviation trade associations in submitting joint comments  to the part 147 supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking, delivering a powerful message of unity and support for technician education. 
In a major advance on this issue we capped the year gaining bi-partisan congressional support for legislation requiring the FAA to speed up reform. The Promoting Aviation Regulations for Technical Training (PARTT) 147 Act ( S.3043 / H.R.5427 ) would direct the agency to replace current training requirements with a new, community-drafted regulation that would establish a performance-based oversight system. Under the new law, part 147 schools would have the flexibility to teach content that is reflective of today’s high-tech environment.
In an effort to address workforce shortages and increase diversity, ATEC supported introduction of a House-backed bill – Promoting Service in Transportation Act (HR 5118)  – that would create public service campaigns to raise awareness of aviation and other transportation careers.
This progress came on the heels of the administration's formal recognization of AMT Day , and “the men and women who carry on our nation’s legacy of aviation and work diligently to ensure our aircraft continue operating at the standard of excellence synonymous with American industry.”
At the same time, ATEC strenuously objected  to the Protect Students Act of 2019, introduced in the Senate, which would severely limit proprietary aviation maintenance technician schools from serving students and veterans , saying the legislation would negatively impact aerospace companies seeking FAA-certified mechanics and other aviation technical personnel. 
On the regulatory front, ATEC took advantage of growing member interest in dual enrollment programs, and asked the FAA to provide a better framework for aviation maintenance schools looking to expand their reach into high schools.
ATEC as an organization continues to grow; in 2019 the trade association again exceeded the previous year's record membership. In October, it announced its intention to create a new 501(c)(3) organization that will implement initiatives to increase career awareness in aviation maintenance.  Choose Aerospace  will also facilitate a new scholarship program.
The revised  Flightplan  renews the council's focus on enhanced member outreach and community opportunities through support staff expansion. A new website and member portal will publish in the summer.

To our members, thank you for your support and engagement. It has been a memorable year to be sure. We look forward to even greater accomplishments in 2020!
Industry News
FAA set to launch changes to airmen testing in January
Early next year, the FAA will change the way it tests airman certificate applicants. Any applicant wishing to take any airman knowledge test will be required to have an 8-digit FAA Tracking Number (FTN) prior to taking the test. Read more.
AWAM opens Bay Area chapter
The Association of Women in Aviation Maintenance (AWAM) founded a new chapter for members in the San Francisco Bay Area. Chapter 16 has also launched a Facebook page   and wants to spread the word to build membership. Read more.
Apprenticeship partnerships with schools on rise
Aviation companies on the leading edge of a new trend in hiring are launching apprenticeship programs with local schools to help fill workforce gaps. With 94% of interns offered full-time jobs and an 88% acceptance rate, apprenticeships are becoming an important workforce source. Read more.
FAA takes steps toward workforce grant program implementation
The November 26 Federal Register contained notices requesting comment on the pilot and technician programs in an effort to assess the reporting burden for grant applicants and recipients . Read More .
BREAKING: FAA clears Santa One for Christmas Eve flight
The safety agency cleared the Santa One sleigh for its around-the-world flight after properly installing Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B) avionics in Rudolph’s nose. Read More .
Choose Aerospace
In September, the ATEC board elected to move forward with official incorporation of a charitable organization with the purpose of raising awareness of careers in aviation.

A new scholarship and award program will be a central initiative for the organization. Opportunities will be announced early 2020.

If your organization would like to contribute a scholarship or award (monetary or non-monetary), please email
Congress introduces legislation to modernize part 147
Members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives issued bipartisan, bicameral legislation that, if signed into law, would modernize long-outdated maintenance training regulations and better aid the education community in supporting America’s growing aviation industry. Read More .
Coalition of aviation organizations sign letter in support of the PARTT 147 Act
Twenty two aviation groups signed a letter in support of legislation that directs the FAA to remove and replace the current part 147 with community-drafted language. Nearly every sector of the industry was represented, including airlines, repair organizations, manufacturing, labor, pilots, and accreditation. Read More .
ATEC calls on community to weigh in, releases grassroots toolkit
ATEC is calling its members to reach out to congressional representatives and ask them to sign on in support of the The Promoting Aviation Regulations for Technical Training (PARTT) 147 Act (S.3043/H.R.5427). We'll show you how! Read More .
Conference News
ATEC Gears up for 2020 Conference
ATEC is busy fleshing out the plans for its 2020 Annual Conference March 29-April 1 in Fort Worth at the Tarrant County Community College Trinity River Campus . Registration is now open for the conference and a block of rooms are available at the Worthington Renaissance Fort Worth Hotel
Agenda items include an update on ATEC’s work as well as a look ahead at the challenges for 2020 along with an aviation policy briefing. The conference will also be the site of our popular student career fair, the Employer Link .

American Airlines is sponsoring a reception and dinner at the famed CR Smith American Airlines Museum.

Break-out sessions will include briefings on high school pathways, apprenticeship programs and unmanned technology while on the regulatory front attendees will receive briefings on airman certification standards as well as testing system updates. Best practices in recruiting will lead off the talent sourcing track along with sessions on Choose Aerospace and Community Outreach.

The teaching techniques track will include augmented reality, learning to teach, the reluctant leader while the credentialing track covers certifications and a research roundtable.

Join Avotek, CertTec, Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics, Lockheed Martin, United, American, Airbus, ASA, Aviation Institute of Maintenance, Snap-on, and AeroTrain as sponsors by clicking here

Sign up to exhibit here or join our Employer Link here.
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