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Virgin Galactic reps visit ENMU-R

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Students at Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell could be in line for jobs with Virgin Galactic at the Spaceport.

Bill McCamley, secretary of the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions, was visiting the Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell campus Tuesday primarily to help in efforts to connect Virgin Galactic representatives with ENMU-R airframe and power plant (A&P) students and instructors.

Virgin Galactic is heading up efforts to develop the suborbital spaceships that are intended to be flown from the Spaceport near Las Cruces.

McCamley said students talked with two Virgin Galactic officials, who might hire students now. They also were providing them with information about how to prepare for careers with the company or in the industry.

“There are only two Airframe and Power Plant programs in the state,” he said. “One is at (Central New Mexico Community College) up in Albuquerque and one is here.”

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McCamley said discussions included how ENMU-R and Virgin Galactic, which he said has hired at least one ENMU-R graduate in the past, could help each other increase the number of skilled workers ready for jobs. That might include emphasizing new types of aircraft materials or bringing some Virgin Galactic instructors to campus.

“The current Airframe and Power program now is good,” he said. “There are ways in which the people here could possibly tweak it to add instructional components that could help people to get jobs over there.”