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Career and Education Opportunities for Aircraft Parts Assemblers in San Jose, California

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for aircraft parts assemblers in the San Jose, California area. There are currently 2,700 working aircraft parts assemblers in California; this should grow by 7% to about 2,900 working aircraft parts assemblers in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for aircraft parts assemblers, which sees this job pool growing by about 9.4% over the next eight years. In general, aircraft parts assemblers assemble, fit, and install parts of airplanes, space vehicles, or missiles, such as tails, wings, fuselage, bulkheads, stabilizers, landing gear, rigging and control equipment, or heating and ventilating systems.

The income of an aircraft parts assembler is about $27 hourly or $57,400 per year on average in California. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $21 hourly or $44,130 per year on average.

There are four schools within twenty-five miles of San Jose where you can study to be an aircraft parts assembler, among fifty-nine schools of higher education total in the San Jose area. The most common level of education for aircraft parts assemblers is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time studying to be an aircraft parts assembler if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Aircraft Parts Assembler

In general, aircraft parts assemblers assemble, fit, and install parts of airplanes, space vehicles, or missiles, such as tails, wings, fuselage, bulkheads, stabilizers, landing gear, rigging and control equipment, or heating and ventilating systems.

Aircraft parts assemblers attach brackets or clips to secure components, using bolts, screws, rivets, chemical bonding, or welding. They also read and interpret blueprints, illustrations, and specifications to establish layouts, sequences of operations, or identities and relationships of components. Equally important, aircraft parts assemblers have to align and install system components, using jigs, fixtures, measuring instruments, hand tools, and power tools. They are often called upon to assemble and connect components, fittings, and assemblies on aircraft, using layout tools and fasteners such as bolts and clamps. They are expected to cut and smooth components, and verify sizes and fitting tolerances in order to insure proper fit and clearance of components. Finally, aircraft parts assemblers position and align subassemblies in jigs or fixtures, using measuring instruments and following blueprint lines and index points.

Every day, aircraft parts assemblers are expected to be able to visualize how things come together and can be organized. They need to prioritize information for further consideration. It is also important that they twist and stretch their arms and legs to get work done.

It is important for aircraft parts assemblers to lay out and mark reference points and locations for installation of components and components, using jigs, templates, and measuring and marking instruments. They are often called upon to assemble and fit prefabricated components to fashion subassemblies. They also fit and fasten sheet metal coverings to surface areas and other sections of aircraft before welding or riveting. They are sometimes expected to clean and/or coat system components as needed before assembling and attaching them. Somewhat less frequently, aircraft parts assemblers are also expected to assemble and fit prefabricated components to fashion subassemblies.

They also have to be able to inspect and test installed units and assemblies for fit and adherence to standards, using measuring instruments and test equipment And finally, they sometimes have to form loops or splices in cables, using clamps and fittings, or reweave cable strands.

Like many other jobs, aircraft parts assemblers must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in San Jose include:

  • Layout Technician. Lay out reference points and dimensions on metal or plastic stock or workpieces, such as sheets, plates, or machine parts, for further processing. Includes shipfitters.
  • Machinist. Set up and operate a variety of machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments. Includes precision instrument makers who fabricate, modify, or repair mechanical instruments. May also fabricate and modify parts to make or repair machine tools or maintain industrial machines, applying knowledge of mechanics, shop mathematics, and machining procedures.
  • Welder. Use hand-welding or flame-cutting equipment to weld or join metal components or to fill holes, indentations, or seams of fabricated metal products.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Aircraft Parts Assembler Training

Wyotech-Oakland Campus - Oakland, CA

Wyotech-Oakland Campus, 9636 Earhart Rd, North Field, Oakland, CA 94621. Wyotech-Oakland Campus is a small school located in Oakland, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 101 students. Wyotech-Oakland Campus has a two to four year program in Airframe Mechanics & Aircraft Maintenance Technology/Technician which graduated eighty-five students in 2008.

Gavilan College - Gilroy, CA

Gavilan College, 5055 Santa Teresa Blvd, Gilroy, CA 95020. Gavilan College is a medium sized college located in Gilroy, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,159 students. Gavilan College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Airframe Mechanics & Aircraft Maintenance Technology/Technician which graduated five, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.

College of Alameda - Alameda, CA

College of Alameda, 555 Ralph Appezzato Memorial Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501. College of Alameda is a medium sized college located in Alameda, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 6,576 students. College of Alameda has 3 areas of study related to Aircraft Parts Assembler. They are:

  • Airframe Mechanics & Aircraft Maintenance Technology/Technician, one to two year, associate's degree, and two to four year which graduated one, two, and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Aircraft Powerplant Technology/Technician, associate's degree and two to four year which graduated two and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Avionics Maintenance Technology/Technician, two to four year.

College of San Mateo - San Mateo, CA

College of San Mateo, 1700 W Hillsdale Blvd, San Mateo, CA 94402-3784. College of San Mateo is a large college located in San Mateo, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 11,215 students. College of San Mateo has an associate's degree and a two to four year program in Avionics Maintenance Technology/Technician.

LOCATION INFORMATION: San Jose, California

San Jose, California
San Jose, California photo by Leslie

San Jose is situated in Santa Clara County, California. It has a population of over 948,279, which has grown by 6.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in San Jose, 163, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in San Jose are priced at $163,800 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred fourteen new homes were built in San Jose, down from three hundred twenty-five the previous year.

The three big industries for women in San Jose are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is computer and electronic products, construction, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average travel time to work is about 28 minutes. More than 31.6% of San Jose residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in San Jose is 13.2%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of San Jose residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 43.2%, is less than both the national and state average. Almaden Hill United Methodist Church, Almaden Valley United Methodist Church and Kingdom Hall of Jehovahs Witnesses are some of the churches located in San Jose. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Muslim Estimate.

San Jose is home to the Evergreen Ranch and the Rosegarden Branch San Jose Public Library as well as Almaden Winery Park and Albertson Park. Shopping malls in the area include Almaden Plaza Shopping Center, Almaden Via Valiente Plaza Shopping Center and Foxworthy Shopping Center. Visitors to San Jose can choose from Atrium Gardens, Best Western Airport Plaza and Best Western Inn Airport Plaza for temporary stays in the area.