Can I Really Do This?

If you’re interested in training for your Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) licenses, you may be wondering… exactly how hard is it going to be to get them? Full disclosure: it depends. Are you a driven and committed person? Do you like overcoming obstacles to better yourself? Do you enjoy working with your hands? If so, becoming an A&P mechanic is the perfect fit! Choosing a career path that is right for you will significantly impact how difficult or easy it is to get there.

Training for and receiving your A&P licenses can be one of the most rewarding experiences imaginable. Choosing to attend a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) school is a straightforward path to earning them and starting your career.

A&P licenses will allow you to work on aircraft as a qualified mechanic. The work that you’ll do as an aviation maintenance technician will vary, but it typically revolves around maintaining, repairing, and inspecting aircraft. These licenses also never expire! Due to the highly-specialized nature of the work, there are a limited number of schools in the nation authorized to train A&P mechanics. It is essential to do your research to choose the school that meets your needs and offers value.

But, back to the main question: how hard is it going to be?

Starting Out

The FAA has set forth strict requirements to become an aircraft mechanic, including that the individual:

  • be at least 18 years of age
  • be able to read, write, and understand English
  • possess a high school diploma or GED

While starting out may be difficult for some, especially those who live internationally and may not speak English, these requirements must be met.

Putting in the Work

Career training schools are different from K-12 public schools, especially when overseen by the Federal Aviation Administration. Working on aircraft is a critical, important role, and one must be appropriately trained. For this reason, training hours must be logged and fully completed to graduate! The journey towards a fulfilling career takes time and effort but can be accomplished.

It is important to note that not all FAA-certified AMT schools are created equal. Sure, the FAA requires that specific subjects are covered to fulfill requirements, but how that subject is covered can differ upon the school. The level and quality of hands-on training offered should be considered when thinking about how difficult the process will or will not be. The experience of faculty, the amount of hands-on coaching provided, and the number of projects to prove your understanding of the material are all contributing factors.

Areas of Study – General, Airframe, and Powerplant

AMT schools are typically divided into three sections, General, Airframe, and Powerplant. These sections are designed to meld with one another to train and educate students to become the most versatile and capable A&P mechanics heading into the workforce! Remember, there are required exams that will test student’s abilities in retaining information and working through situational examples.

The FAA has strict guidelines on the curriculum for AMT schools’ General, Powerplant, and Airframe courses.

General subjects cover topics such as mathematics, physics, basic electricity, weight & balance, and more! General studies help students to strengthen the skills needed to move on to Airframe and Powerplant courses.

Powerplant curriculum includes reciprocating engines, turbine engine theory and repair, induction, ignition and starting, engine troubleshooting, engine electrical systems, plus more!

Airframe curriculum includes inspection, structures (wood, sheet metal, composite), airframe electrical, fluid lines and fitting, navigation and communication, landing gear systems, hydraulic & pneumatic systems, cabin atmosphere, fuel systems, and the list goes on!

How Hard Are the Courses?

The difficulty of earning your A&P licenses is subjective. While regular attendance and preparing for tests may be hard for some, if you’re willing and able to study effectively, attend classes, and pay attention to the instructors, then you should have no problem!

Instructors play a major role in training students to earn their A&P certificates. Our industry veteran instructors know that education is the most important step to passing tests and proving competency! There is value in learning from those who have gone through the A&P training process themselves! The opportunity to absorb their industry experience and insight is another advantage!

The Responsibility of A&P Licensed Mechanics

The safety of millions of air travel passengers depends on the work of A&P certified aviation maintenance technicians. Earning these professional certifications comes with a certain level of responsibility.  A&P mechanics possess a unique understanding of their value to the industry and the importance of their work.

Those in other fields outside aviation have the same responsibility. For instance, those working at theme parks who maintain, repair, and inspect rollercoasters and other rides also have an equal responsibility to protect the public.

So, is it hard to get your A&P licenses? Hard isn’t the word we’d use, especially with industry veteran instructors and a curriculum that includes:

  • classroom instruction accompanied by text and workbook review
  • team-oriented projects in a laboratory setting which simulate on-the-job scenarios
  • real-world experience working on aircraft at our hangar

In as little as 14 months, you can be on your way to a fulfilling career after earning your A&P licenses! Rather than it being hard to complete training, we’d call it important.