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ENMU-Roswell tweaks aviation maintenance program

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An aviation maintenance technology certificate program at Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell will be adjusted a bit after Community College Board and Board of Regents members approved a change during their meetings this week.

The groups approved the proposal to turn what is now a single Certificate of Achievement in Airframe and Powerplant into two separate certificates in those areas.

“This is to provide the opportunity for the student to test as soon as they have completed each area of study instead of waiting until the completion of both,” according to information provided to board members.

The information stated that creating two certificates would spread out the costs of taking the Federal Aviation Administration exams. It also would allow students to process information in smaller segments.

Because of ENMU-Roswell procedures and policies, the item had been described as a “deactivation,” but Annemarie Oldfield, vice president for academic and student affairs, told Community College Board members that the changes are intended to enhance the program.

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“Don’t panic. We are building up our aviation program,” she said at the Wednesday meeting. “But one of the ways you build a program is to assess it to see what is working for students and what is not working for students.”

She said the changes have been made to be “seamless” so current students will be able to proceed as they have been.

She said students could complete one certificate and seek employment, but they would have a better chance at getting jobs with certification of both skill sets.

“What you hear from our aviation instruction, usually the more certificates you have, the more marketable you are in your field,” she said.

The Board of Regents with Eastern New Mexico University approved the change on Friday.

The aviation maintenance technology program — which can be expanded to an Associate of Applied Science degree that also includes the certificate — is expected to grow in the coming years as Roswell works to build aviation-related businesses at the Roswell Air Center. According to prior interviews with ENMU-Roswell administrators, its aviation program graduates also work with aerospace companies, including Virgin Galactic at the Spaceport America facility near Las Cruces.

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