Career and Education Opportunities for Aircraft Mechanics in Waco, Texas
There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for aircraft mechanics in the Waco, Texas area. Currently, 17,160 people work as aircraft mechanics in Texas. This is expected to grow 24% to 21,230 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for aircraft mechanics are expected to grow by about 6.4%. In general, aircraft mechanics diagnose, adjust, or overhaul aircraft engines and assemblies, such as hydraulic and pneumatic systems.
The income of an aircraft mechanic is about $23 per hour or $47,950 annually on average in Texas. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $24 per hour or $51,390 yearly on average. Incomes for aircraft mechanics are better than in the overall category of Aircraft in Texas, and better than the overall Aircraft category nationally.
The Waco area is home to seven schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Waco where you can get a degree as an aircraft mechanic. Aircraft mechanics usually hold a post-secondary certificate, so you can expect to spend a short time training to become an aircraft mechanic if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Aircraft Mechanic
In general, aircraft mechanics diagnose, adjust, or overhaul aircraft engines and assemblies, such as hydraulic and pneumatic systems.
Aircraft mechanics read and interpret maintenance manuals and other specifications to establish the feasibility and method of repairing or replacing malfunctioning or damaged parts. They also remove or repair worn, faulty, or damaged parts, using hand tools and testing equipment. Equally important, aircraft mechanics have to maintain and rebuild aircraft structures and parts such as wings and fuselage and seals. They are often called upon to assemble and install electrical, plumbing and structural parts and accessories, using hand or power tools. They are expected to examine and inspect aircraft parts, including landing gear and deicers to identify cracks or other problems. Finally, aircraft mechanics measure parts for wear, using precision instruments.
Every day, aircraft mechanics are expected to be able to read and understand documents and reports. They need to control and manipulate objects at a fine level of detail. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.
It is important for aircraft mechanics to inventory and requisition or order supplies, parts and equipment. They are often called upon to examine airframes for wear or other defects. They also measure the tension of control cables. They are sometimes expected to clean and sand structural surfaces and materials to ready them for bonding. Somewhat less frequently, aircraft mechanics are also expected to decide on repair limits for engine hot section parts.
Aircraft mechanics sometimes are asked to modify aircraft structures or parts, following drawings and technical publications. They also have to be able to maintain repair logs, documenting all preventive and corrective aircraft maintenance and listen to operating engines to uncover and diagnose malfunctions such as sticking or burned valves. And finally, they sometimes have to remove and install in-flight refueling stores and external fuel tanks.
Like many other jobs, aircraft mechanics must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Waco include:
- Auto Mechanic. Repair automobiles, trucks, and other vehicles. Master mechanics repair virtually any part on the vehicle or specialize in the transmission system.
- Avionics Technician. Install, inspect, or repair avionics equipment, such as radar, radio, and missile control systems in aircraft or space vehicles.
- Industrial Machinery Mechanic. Repair, install, or maintain industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems.
- Mechanical Door Repairer. Install, service, or repair opening and closing mechanisms of automatic doors and hydraulic door closers. Includes garage door mechanics.
- Millwright. Install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to layout plans, blueprints, or other drawings.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Aircraft Mechanic Training
Texas State Technical College Waco - Waco, TX
Texas State Technical College Waco, 3801 Campus Dr, Waco, TX 76705. Texas State Technical College Waco is a medium sized college located in Waco, Texas. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,376 students. Texas State Technical College Waco has 2 areas of study related to Aircraft Mechanic. They are:
- Airframe Mechanics & Aircraft Maintenance Technology/Technician, one to two year which graduated 9 students in 2008.
- Aircraft Powerplant Technology/Technician, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated six and eleven students respectively in 2008.
Airmen Certification: Include the following areas:
- Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application for Flight Engineers, Flight Navigators, Aircraft Dispatchers, and Control Tower Operators
- 8610-1 (PDF) - Mechanic's Application for Inspection Authorization
- Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application for Mechanics, Repairman, and Parachute Riggers
- Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application for Pilots, Flight Instructors and Ground Instructors
- Airman Certificate and/or Rating Application for Sport Pilot
For more information, see the Federal Aviation Administration website.
- A first-class airman medical certificate is required to exercise the privileges of an airline transport pilot certificate.
For more information, see the Federal Aviation Administration website.
Certified Lubrication Specialist: Certification recognizes those individuals who possess current knowledge of lubrication fundamentals and theory.
For more information, see the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers website.
Certified Aerospace Technician: The SpaceTEC Certified Aerospace Technician Core exam is a three part exam consisting of a 70 question, computer based, written exam, followed by an oral and practical evaluation of an individual's technical knowledge and skills.
For more information, see the SpaceTEC website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Waco, Texas
Waco is situated in Mclennan County, Texas. It has a population of over 124,009, which has grown by 9.0% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Waco, 82, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Waco are valued at $144,900 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-eight new homes were built in Waco, down from five hundred fifty the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Waco are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, educational services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 18.6% of Waco residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Waco is 7.4%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.
The percentage of Waco residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.5%, is more than both the national and state average. El Calvario Presbyterian Church, Abundant New Life Assembly of God Church and Adams Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church are among the churches located in Waco. The most prominent religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.
Waco is home to the Helen Marie Taylor Museum and the Potts Interchange as well as Heart O Texas Coliseum and Kathy Ball Park. Shopping malls in the area include Lake Air Shopping Center and Richland Shopping Center. Visitors to Waco can choose from Budget Inn, America's Best Inns and Best Western Old Main Lodge for temporary stays in the area.