School, City Officials Announce Aerospace Academy

WORKFORCE NEEDS: Mayor Dewey Bartlett speaks during the April 15 press conference where the launch of the Aerospace Academy was announced. The academy will be for area high school students and will begin this fall at the Tulsa Tech Riverside Campus. Also pictured are Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Keith Ballard, second from left, Tulsa Tech Superintendent Dr. Steve Tiger, Mark Easton, with American Airlines, and Colonel Davis Burgy of the Oklahoma National Guard.

ROSSY GILLE for GTR Newspapers

In April, Mayor Dewey Bartlett along with Tulsa Tech Superintendent Dr. Steve Tiger and Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Keith Ballard announced the launch of the Tulsa Tech Aerospace Academy for area high school students that will begin this fall at the Tulsa Tech Riverside Campus.

The program will be available to area juniors and seniors and was created in direct response to the workforce needs of the aerospace and technology job sectors. The first class will have 40 students and last a full school year or, potentially, two years.

All state-mandated curriculum will be required of students participating in the Aerospace Academy for the full-day program at Tulsa Tech. Program offerings include Private Pilot Ground School, Aviation Maintenance Generals, Cisco Network Technician, Computer Network Technology, Cyber Security and Network Systems Administration.

The Aerospace Academy is a pilot project that will support the call of business and industry demands for training and educational platforms that support science, technology, engineering and math ().

Students will have technical classes for half of the school day, with the remainder of the day to include core high school courses, as well as life skills, financial literacy and career counseling support. Bus transportation will be provided from the student’s home high school to and from Tulsa Tech, and students will graduate from their home high school.

Plans also call for aerospace industry leaders to arrange internship opportunities for students who choose to participate in the program. This provides Aerospace Academy students with firsthand experience in the field, which would help students transition into the workplace.

“I talk to business owners weekly and hear consistently that Tulsa does not have enough trained and qualified workers to fill jobs,” Mayor Dewey Bartlett says. “As a city, we must be vigilant to the needs of the business community and create a pathway to prosperity for students who would benefit from training and learning a skill that places them in a well-paying career in Tulsa.”

“Tulsa Tech is focused on being the region’s leader of career and technical education resulting in a quality job for every Tulsa Tech student and a skilled workforce for every company. In order to accomplish this vision, we must collaborate and partner with business and educational institutions to best meet workforce needs,” says Dr. Steve Tiger.

Updated 04-25-2015

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