WATS 2024 Maintenance Session 5 provided more affirmation this community’s leaders are moving their training programs and systems beyond legacy training. 

George Perrin was back at the helm to moderate a session broadly billed as a focus on CBTA. 

Crystal Maguire, Executive Director at Aviation Technician Training Council, was the first presenter. She initially detailed the implications to the community of the new Part 147. The executive noted the earlier impediments to AMTSs presented by the previous edition of Part 147 have subsided – indeed, the regulation is now near the bottom of suggested community barriers. In a mixed message, Maguire noted while the new Part 147 has breathed new life and vitality into AMTSs and their curricula in particular, their enrollments have barely increased, presenting a huge challenge to AETC and the broader community to get “more butts into seats.” On cue, Maguire updated delegates on Choose Aviation, a partnership of aerospace stakeholders, managed by AETC, joined together to address one of the biggest threats to continued industry growth: the availability of a diverse, qualified technical aerospace workforce https://learn.chooseaerospace. org/. To that end, the executive encouraged delegates to continue reaching out to high schools to gain their support and participation in efforts to recruit qualified individuals into the ranks of maintainers.  

Jason Stanelle, Associate Technical Fellow and Chief of Design at Boeing Commercial Maintenance Training, drilled down to present some attention-getting fundamentals to the overflowing gathering. Under the broad presentation of Evaluating Efficiency, the Boeing training expert called attention to the importance of data. The expanding primacy of data has been a common theme at WATS 2024, whether it is for the use of individuals in simulators or other learning scenarios. Stanelle was also the first individual this author has heard during WATS mention ROIs. More to point, the subject matter expert emphasized the need to determine the value of training. So, while some air carriers report profits in this challenging environment, there also remains the imperative to state the cost of the training investment cost and determining its contributions to operational performance. 

Denmark-based Søren Seindal Agner, CEO, AEROTEAM Training Solutions, presented a number of opportunities that appeared elementary and are available to delegates as they strive to achieve the next evolution in maintenance training – toward competency outcomes. Indeed, the presenter, who has credentials in different aviation community positions, in and beyond maintenance, spoke of human factors, the importance of active learning and consideration of individual learning skills as three of many factors to elevate training to higher levels. Presenting the CBTA model as important on this journey to advance the maintenance training enterprise, he asked the delegates to also consider factors that being taken for granted by some program leaders, for instance whether scenario-based training is analogue or digital and the importance of other skills (non-technical, cognitive social and other). Agner’s strategies were matter-of-fact and should allow mid- and upper managers to migrate their programs to new, forward-leaning constructs.       

WATS sponsor-block