Thursday, 5 September 2019

Republic Airways LIFT Academy celebrates one-year anniversary

One year after opening its hangar doors, Republic Airways Leadership in Flight Training (LIFT) Academy announces the launch of its second aviation workforce development program. In partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor, LIFT Academy will begin an aviation maintenance technician apprenticeship program later this month in Indianapolis. The registered apprenticeship program is the only one of its kind in Indiana and one of only eight in the United States.

“There has never been a more exciting time to enter the field of aviation, and the industry must do more to attract individuals into these jobs that provide a life-long career and stable pay,” said Matt Koscal, Republic Airways senior vice president and chief administrative officer. “We are excited that LIFT is recognized by the U.S. Department of Labor for addressing this important workforce development need. This recognition not only validates the need for such programs but also acknowledges the quality of the career-focused training students learn at LIFT Academy.”

The LIFT Aviation Maintenance Technician Apprenticeship Program is an earn-to-learn model where apprentices will be paid through their on-the-job training as they work alongside licensed airframe and powerplant (A&P) professionals, learning the skills and accruing the hours needed to earn the licenses needed to become an aviation maintenance technician. Under the supervision of LIFT Academy and Republic Airways licensed A&P mechanics, apprentices will work nose to tail on LIFT Academy single and multiengine training aircraft, Diamond DA40 and DA42 planes, as well as Republic Airways Embraer 170/175 E-Jets that feature GE CF34-8E jet engines.

The program will take individuals approximately three years to complete, and once licensed, apprentices will have a guaranteed job at Republic Airways as an aviation maintenance technician.

“Our maintenance team is extremely experienced and has among the highest safety records in the industry,” Paul Kinstedt, senior vice president and chief operating officer, said. “There’s no better group to mentor new technicians coming into the profession.”

LIFT Academy, which launched its flight training program on September 4, 2018, is the only organization in the United States to offer both the registered Airframe and Powerplant and Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) apprenticeships through the U.S. Department of Labor. LIFT apprenticeships met five core requirements in order to qualify: paid position, work-based learning, classroom learning, mentorship and credentials. More information on the program can be found at

“At LIFT, we’re addressing the barriers to entry for pilots and now maintenance technicians as well as making aviation an attractive career option for the Generation Z and beyond, helping create our workforce of the future,” Koscal added.

More than 200 students are currently enrolled in LIFT Academy’s flight training program, and its first students who began training one year ago in September have transitioned to certificated flight instructors as they earn flight hours required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to become commercial airline pilots. The instructor position is qualified through the Department of Labor as a registered ATP apprenticeship. Students who successfully complete flight training at LIFT are guaranteed a job as a Republic Airways pilot.

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