Graduate Spotlight - Aircraft Maintenance

Program turns career around

amt-AndersonFor Michael Anderson, the Aircraft Maintenance Technology program at Greenville Technical College was a clear turning point. It allowed the former canning factory employee to go to work at Stevens Aviation performing line service work, and eventually, to be promoted to AMT mechanic.

Anderson, a good student in high school, became a better student at Greenville Technical College. The classes were challenging, attendance was mandatory no matter how tired he may have been from working, and the instructors weren't satisfied with anything less than a strong effort.

As a result, Anderson has skills that can be put into use in many different areas. Aircraft Maintenance Technology graduates can become AMT mechanics, or they can choose sales, management, corrosion, and other specialties. "There are lots of different things you can do," Anderson said. "I wanted that diversity."

One thing that most of those diverse opportunities have in common is a high rate of pay. "In this area, an AMT mechanic coming straight out of Greenville Tech can make $15 to $17 per hour with no experience," Anderson said. "With five to 10 years of experience and job performance, you can jump to $23 or $24 per hour."

Now, Anderson is moving into quality control work with Stevens and after a short break, is planning to take his skills to the next level. Thanks to a new partnership between Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Greenville Technical College, he'll transfer his associate degree credits straight into a bachelor's degree program. Anderson turned his career around with education, and he plans to keep it heading straight up.