Hawaiian Airlines, Honolulu CC aviation maintenance program producing more technicians
Hawaiian Airlines and Honolulu Community College are celebrating the success of their partnership to graduate more local students as aviation maintenance technicians.
Over the summer, Hawaiian Airlines hired eight graduates from Honolulu CC’s Aeronautics Maintenance Technology Program, or AERO, on top of the 36 the airline had already hired since 2016. Last fall, two of Hawaiian Airlines’ aviation maintenance instructors began teaching classes at Honolulu CC to help boost enrollment at the campus and meet growing demand for the jobs.
“It’s very rewarding to see our students find living-wage jobs in their field immediately after graduating from our program,” said Honolulu CC Chancellor Karen Lee. “We appreciate Hawaiian’s interest and strong investment in our aviation maintenance technician program, and we look forward to growing our partnership.”
Under the two-year program, Honolulu CC students graduate prepared with the knowledge and practical skills necessary to obtain the FAA Airframe and Power Plant Maintenance certification and pursue high-paying aviation jobs. It is estimated that 610,000 aviation maintenance technicians will be needed over the next two decades to support growth in the global aviation industry.
“As the hometown airline, it is invaluable for us to have access to students who are graduating from Honolulu CC with the skills we are looking for and the desire to begin an exciting career here in Hawaiʻi,” said Jim Landers, senior vice president for technical operations at Hawaiian Airlines. “We are adding a new fleet of aircraft starting next year and will be looking for many more aviation maintenance technicians to join our ‘ohana and support our company’s growth.”
“It’s a hidden gem for sure. It takes a lot of hard work,” Hawaiian Airlines Aviation Maintenance Technician Joshua Awai, who graduated from Honolulu CC’s AERO program in May, said about the program. “It definitely pays off, because you can go into a big industry like Hawaiian Airlines.”
Demand for Honolulu CC’s AERO program remains strong, with three cohorts of 25 students preparing to begin classes in the coming school year, and a waiting list of more than 100 prospective students.