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How to Select Airframe and Powerplant Schools to Get an A&P License

Updated on January 25, 2012

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has a certification and licensing program for aircraft mechanics. These technicians generally prepare for a career and license testing by attending an airframe and powerplant school.

Technically, an aircraft mechanic does not need to attend a school to eventually get an A & P license to repair and maintain airframes and powerplants. It is possible to get the initial certification after 18 months of work experience. However, in many cases, this is just not feasible since it would be difficult to get a job as an aircraft mechanic without attending an aviation maintenance technician school. Thus, it is important for most people seeking a career as an A & P mechanic to learn how to select approved airframe and powerplant schools.

Completion of a mechanic school allows an applicant to initially get a certification for either airframes or powerplants, but not both. When you attend school, you will learn both areas of maintenance. However, the FAA wants aviation mechanics to get 30 months of experience before being fully certified for both.

The FAA approves schools throughout the country. There are hundreds of airframe and powerplant schools. Because new ones can pop up from time to time, you want to make sure an A & P course is approved by the FAA before enrolling. This is especially true because you would then have to get work experience to get certified. As described above, it may prove extremely difficult to get a job to gain that experience unless you graduate from an A & P school course.

The FAA website has a database with all of the approved schools. There is a link at the bottom of this article that leads to that search page. If you try to search in all states, it will not work. Instead, select an individual state to look for a nearby airframe and powerplant school. You can then continue to go through the states and contact schools of interest.

In the search results, you will see a phone number or other contact information for each A & P school. Use that to get more information and then make a decision about which A & P course is right for you.

Resources:

FAA: Approved Airframe and Powerplant Mechanic Schools

CareerOneStop: Information on Certification as an A & P Aircraft Mechanic

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