Aviation’s top technicians from around the world are gearing up to compete in the Aerospace Maintenance Competition, presented by Snap-on at the MRO Americas 2017 Convention, April 25-27, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.
The competition provides certified AMTs from major airlines, MROs and OEMs, as well as military personnel and students in FAA Part 147 schools the chance to test their skills against their peers.
The two-day competition runs from 1 to 5 p.m. April 25, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 26. The awards presentation is from 9 to 11 a.m. April 27.
“The Aerospace Maintenance Competition is a venue that allows aircraft engineers, technicians and students from around the world to stand up and speak out about our craft,” said Ken MacTiernan, chairman, Aerospace Maintenance Competition. “It’s important to have this event because the industry and public have often taken for granted the men and women who are the true faces behind safety in aviation. After more than 100 years of aviation history, these technicians deserve recognition for their knowledge, skill and integrity.”
This year’s field is the strongest to date, as more than 60 teams representing seven countries are expected to participate. Some of the more notable teams include: Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, JetBlue, Air China, Qantas Airlines, UPS. FedEx, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical College, Indian Hills Community College, Boeing, Embraer and AAR.
The teams will compete in more than 20 events that challenge their knowledge, skill and team work.
The team earning the overall best score takes home the grand prize in aviation maintenance — the William F. “Bill” O’Brien Award for Excellence in Aircraft Maintenance.
The O’Brien Award is a traveling trophy that debuted at the 2013 competition. The winning team receives the honor of displaying the 5-foot tall trophy in their facility for a year. Last year, the five-member team from Alaska Airlines Team Seattle was awarded the trophy, and it has been on display at the company’s facility at SeaTac International Airport.
In addition to the trophy, Snap-on is awarding more than $75,000 in tools and equipment as prizes to the top finishers in the competition.
John Goglia, famed aviation safety and maintenance consultant and former National Transportation Safety Board member, said that the event serves as a great opportunity for seasoned professionals to mentor students who are looking to break into the aviation maintenance field.
“The AMC brings together professionals and students in the aviation career path so they can demonstrate their skills, their knowledge and integrity,” said Goglia, president, Aerospace Maintenance Council, which hosts the Aerospace Maintenance Competition. “There’s a lot of mentoring going on here between the professionals in the business and students. Every year we see many airline and MRO teams sitting with students and explaining some of the things they have to do as mechanics and what they have to do here for their testing. Mentoring is alive and well, and I love every minute of it.”
Snap-on is providing all the tools and equipment used by the participants during the competition, as well as providing planning and logistical support.