Aviation industry experts warn that a “perfect storm” is coming: a growing industry and an aging workforce is expected to create a shortage of aircraft maintenance technicians – as many as 35,000 of them per year, by some reckonings.
Where will the industry find these new technicians? In Maryland, at least, they’re in Washington County. At the Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics (PIA), to be precise.
Don’t let the name fool you; the nonprofit institution’s Hagerstown branch is the only facility in Maryland that offers the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airframe and Powerplant Certification, or A&P, for short. Generally speaking, all mechanical work done on an aircraft must be verified by a certified A&P technician (there are some exceptions for the military and for experimental aircraft).
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