Oklahoma CareerTechs Create Aerospace Partnership

Metro Technology Centers and Rose State College recently announced a partnership to create life-long learning opportunities for students pursuing careers in the aerospace industry. Metro Tech is one of the leaders in the aircraft/airframe maintenance educational industry. So, it was only natural for Rose State and Metro Tech to come together not only to allow students to further their educational opportunities but also further career opportunities.

Donald Wetekam, program director of Oklahoma Aerospace Commerce Economic Services, said the partnership is a “prime example” of Oklahoma’s collaborative environment to help companies succeed.

“By creating pathways for education with on- and off-ramps, we are helping students continue their education and giving Oklahoma aerospace companies access to a larger talent pipeline vital for continued industry growth,” Wetekam said.

Students who earn their Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) A&P Certificate through Metro Tech will be able to qualify for credit hours toward an Associate’s Degree at Rose State. These students have two aerospace options to choose from at Rose State – an Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree or an Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree.

“Rose State and its partners have created a pathway for education with on-ramps and off-ramps to the workforce,” stated Dr. Jeanie Webb, President of Rose State College. “This is a comprehensive partnership that extends beyond Rose State and Metro Tech to include common education, colleges, universities, and other career technology centers in the state.”

“Metro Technology Centers’ Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT) students have a higher first time pass rate nationally and consistently ranks as a top 5 school in the nation. The AMT is one of the most rigorous and intense certifications and we are thrilled Rose State College is able to substantiate the value and credibility in the form of college credit,” stated Metro Technology Centers Superintendent Bob Parrish.

Rose State Vice President for External Affairs Tamara Pratt said the partnership will help create opportunities for career advancement, increase skilled labor and feed the pipeline in the state’s aerospace industry.

“Aerospace is the second-largest growing industry in the state of Oklahoma. What do we need to make it the number one industry? And that’s an increased workforce, a more skilled workforce … all of those things that play into having a stronger aerospace industry and creating a stronger pipeline,” Pratt said.

“What we’re hearing from industry is a lot of times, once you get your A&P you go directly into the workforce, but there is nothing to be able to help them move forward,” she said.

Pratt said recruiting for the programs in the partnership has already begun.

The leadership of the two organizations will sign an approved memorandum of understanding (MOU) to confirm the partnership agreement. A formal ceremony is scheduled for later in the year.

[Image courtesy of Metro Technology Centers. A student in the Metro Technology Centers Aircraft Maintenance Technology Program works on an aircraft.]

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