Eau Gallie High’s Aviation Fabrication and Assembly program celebrates new facility
August 21, 2018
MELBOURNE, Florida—The Aviation Fabrication and Assembly program at Eau Gallie High finally has a permanent home. Furthermore, the school recently earned the distinction of being the only high school in the nation to become an approved training provider for the Aerospace/Aircraft Assembly (AAA) certification exam.
Dennis Soboleski, Career and Technical Education resource teacher, said: “It’s the only high school program of its kind in Brevard County and it is a hands-on assembly and fabrication program. Most other aviation-related programs at the high school level focus on flight and or avionics.”
The program is beginning its fourth year and, until now, students met in a locker room that was converted into a temporary classroom and lab, and they worked on aircraft in a fenced-in outside area. On August 17 at a ribbon-cutting event, doors officially opened at the school’s Aviation Fabrication and Assembly building.
The new building will provide students with the opportunity to work on aircraft in a professional industrial environment, which is crucial for their challenging tasks. Students have the unique experience of working on two single-engine airplanes, a 40-foot twin-engine jet and a small helicopter. Students dissemble, reassemble, repair, paint and work on engines and much more, all in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration standards.
There are currently 120 students in the program, which offers two industry certification opportunities.
- Aerospace/Aircraft Assembly (AAA) certification
- Private Pilot Ground School
In May, the National Center for Aerospace & Transportation Technologies (NCATT) confirmed Eau Gallie High met all the requirements to be an AAA training and testing center. NCATT provides the vehicle through which the United States aerospace industry identifies, develops and delivers comprehensive and current knowledge standards for the aerospace industry.
In addition, if students pass the ground school exam, they only need to participate in flight training to earn their private pilot’s license.
Soboleski recognized program supporters including government, school and BPS leadership, and Heard Construction Company, Embraer Executive Jets, Career Source Brevard and The Economic Development Commission (EDC) of Florida’s Space Coast.
Lynda Weatherman, president and CEO of the Space Coast EDC said: “The Aviation Assembly and Fabrication program will strengthen our workforce pipeline, ensuring Brevard County’s aviation and aerospace industries remain globally competitive. The EDC will continue working with BPS to ensure the program remains in line with our local industry needs to prepare our students for their future here on the Space Coast.”
To establish the program, BPS’ Career and Technical Education team submitted a proposal to the Florida Department of Education. Soboleski credits Eau Gallie High’s aviation instructor Bill Mcinnish for writing much of the FLDOE’s Aviation Fabrication and Assembly curriculum.
Soboleski said, “A program like this would fail without an extremely dedicated and knowledgeable instructor and leader.”
For more information, please contact Dennis Soboleski, Office of Career and Technical Education, at 321-633-1000 ext. 281 or Soboleski.Dennis@BrevardSchools.org.
Media contact: Jennifer Wolfinger, media & publications coordinator
321-633-1000 ext. 778