Seventeen years of success giving aerospace hopefuls a headstart

It’s a program that is contingent on its graduates’ success. If a person is hired after taking part in the Aerospace Manufacturing and Maintenance Orientation Program (AMMOP) at Technical Vocational High School (Tec Voc), the rest of their training is provided through the employer.
So far, the limited risk has paid off. Students between the ages of 18 and 30 can attend the 10-month program at no charge, and industry partners are eagerly matching qualified graduates into roles within their companies.
Now in its 18th year, the program has a 75 per cent placement rate within industry, and has been awarded internationally for its innovative collaboration. Of the remaining 25 per cent, many have gone on to pursue further education or training within the industry, to Red River College or to engineering studies at the University of Manitoba, for example.
The collaboration
The partnership was initiated by the Manitoba Aerospace Human Resources Council (MAHRC), an extension of the Manitoba Aerospace Association, which is charged with helping ensure a vibrant workforce and continued success in the industry’s future. Teaming up with Tec Voc and the Winnipeg School Division, MAHRC has helped initiate young people into the dynamic industry through an accessible, low-risk introduction.
Over the course of 10 months, students explore things like aircraft components and functions, engine fundamentals, aviation math and physics, blueprint reading and technical drawings, composite fabrication and repair, non-destructive testing, and sheet metal fabrication and repair, to introduce them to the skills and knowledge they’ll need to work within the industry.

Hands-on learning is emphasized in the program.
Hands-on learning is emphasized in the program.

The program has also partnered with Workplace Education Manitoba to upgrade essential skills like reading text, document use and numeracy – important pillars for gaining employment in the local aerospace sector.
Course requirements are simply the completion of Grade 12, and a competence in math, science and English. Entrance testing is conducted in May, followed by reference checks and an interview, and the selected 50 students get to begin the program in late August.
The program’s part-time structure (half-weeks) is conducive to working part-time while attending the program, giving students flexibility.
AMMOP is a great starting point to build a skill base or prepare for further education. The program is designed for young people who are unsure about their career direction and inviting for established workers who wish to make a career change.
While part-time, the program has expectations of perfect attendance.
What follows
Once students have completed the program, some career options include gas turbine technologist, aircraft maintenance engineer, aerospace machinist, non-destructive tester and composite fabricator – or apprenticeship trades like aircraft maintenance journeyperson or gas turbine repair and overhaul technician.
An open house at Tec Voc exposes interested parties to industry leaders from Boeing Canada, Magellan Aerospace and StandardAero – some of the top employers in the local industry. This year’s was held on April 29.
The program boasts 548 graduates since its inception, proving the validity of the program and the industry’s efforts to retain talent.
The success of the program has even led to the creation of a high school vocational program – Aviation and Aerospace Technologies – for students in Grade 9 to 12.
For more information on admission requirements or course offerings, contact Greg Link at greglink@wsd1.org or 204-786-1401 ext. 586.

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