Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) Worldwide held the first graduation ceremony for its Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT) program, successfully graduating 12 Marine students at The Landing on Marine Corps Air Station New River, Oct. 4.

ERAU is a private university; its main campuses are located in Daytona Beach, Florida and Prescott, Arizona. They opened their campus on Marine Corps Air Station New River in 2019.

ERAU provides many different programs in addition to the AMT. The AMT program is a nine-week, full-time program designed to train and place transitioning service members, veterans and eligible military spouses into aviation maintenance and technician careers.

“Our curriculum provides six classes with the students earning 18 undergraduate credit hours,” said Amber Evans, assistant campus director with the New River Campus. “The program is in class, Monday through Friday and once graduated from the program, they earn an Aviation Maintenance Technology Part 65 certificate from ERAU and possess the academic knowledge to pursue an Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) certificate.  Students must still satisfy the experience requirements established by the FAA to qualify for testing; some MOSs may meet this experience requirement.

Applicants are not required to have an aviation maintenance background, but a mechanical aptitude is required. The class holds 30 students and is held three times a year in January, May and September.

“Students generally fund the program using their GI bill,” Evans said. “It uses about three months of their entitled bill.”

According to Evans, the graduates will receive guaranteed interviews with recognized industry hiring partners such as Pratt & Whitney and AAR Corp. All 12 graduating students received job offers with different companies worldwide.

“The predictions are that there will be 700,000 aviation maintainers needed in the next 20 years worldwide,” said Angela Albritton, director of Military Relations and Strategic Initiatives. “There is such a large need because of the growth in aviation, and also because of the many retirements coming.”

ERAU is currently accepting applications for the nine-week program and one can register by coming into the Embry-Riddle Camp Lejeune campus office located at the Education Center on MCAS New River, Bldg. A2-212 room 213.

“This is the first course that is allowing service members the time to learn and study to get their A&P license,” said Sgt. Charles Cohagen, a flight line mechanic with Marine Heavy Helicopter Training Squadron 302. “If you are in the avionics field, do not be deterred.”

For more information, visit worldwide.erau.edu/amtp or call Amber Evans at (910) 449-5794.