LOS ANGELES — Clay Lacy Aviation has awarded $10,200 in scholarship funds to 24 students enrolled at the Aviation Center (AV-Center), an aircraft mechanics school at Van Nuys Airport and operated by the Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD) Division of Adult and Career Education.
Recipients were selected based on their higher education goals, academic achievements and community involvement, according to company officials.
“We are excited to help develop the next generation of aircraft mechanics and attract more high-skilled, high-paying jobs to Los Angeles,” said Clay Lacy Aviation President and CEO Brian Kirkdoffer. “Aircraft maintenance is one of the most important jobs in the aviation industry. This program is ranked among the top in the nation and enables graduates to land great jobs working on private, commercial and military aircraft.”
The scholarship funds will be awarded in fall 2015 to help students cover the costs of tuition, books, tools and certification exams.
Clay Lacy Aviation has a long history of hiring graduates and donated two iconic business jets (a Learjet and Gulfstream) to the school in 2014. The scholarship program was announced last February at the groundbreaking ceremony for the company’s new six-acre development at Van Nuys Airport.
Offering both day and evening classes, the AV-Center recently reinstated its once thriving night program, which was eliminated in 2012 due to LAUSD budget cuts. Evening classes started on Aug. 19, and are still open for enrollment.
“Clay Lacy Aviation’s annual scholarship fund is another example of its generous contributions to aviation education spanning over four decades,” said Elizabeth Penuela, Assistant Principal of Operations at North Valley Service Area of Adult Schools in the Division of Career Technical Education LAUSD. “Clay Lacy Aviation has greatly benefited our program and students throughout the years. This is an exciting time in adult education.”
Founded in 1973, AV-Center is open to adults and high school seniors over age 16. It offers a combination of classroom lecture and shop-oriented projects, with facilities that allow students to work on propeller aircraft, jets and helicopters. Full-time students can complete the program in two years in preparation for the FAA licensing examination in General Airframe and Aircraft Powerplant Mechanics. The AV-Center is the only public aviation mechanics school of its kind in California, and one of the few that is open to high school students and located at an airport.