There are many moving parts that make up the aviation industry. From airport managers and transportation safety administration (TSA) workers to pilots and flight attendants—among many other jobs in-between—keeping passengers safe both on the ground and in the air is a monumental task. But did you ever wonder who’s working behind the scenes to keep the aircraft safe and running efficiently?

We’d like to take you through a day in the life of an aviation maintenance technician (AMT). Imagine working on multi-million-dollar equipment that powers some of our country’s most elite transportation, energy and defense manufacturers. Sounds interesting, right? Read on to learn how Vaughn’s Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) certificate program can be your ticket to a futureproof career.

The role of an AMT

Aviation maintenance technicians are considered to be the backbone of the aviation industry. You may not have thought of this before, but without these highly skilled professionals, no other careers could exist in the aviation industry. Talk about an in-demand career! Simply put, AMTs oversee the operation of various types of aircraft, including jets and helicopters, by maintaining and repairing their systems and components. No two days are ever the same!

What it takes to become an AMT

The role of an AMT―also known as an airframe and powerplant technician―is a demanding career. It is a highly skilled job that requires licensing by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to ensure candidates have mastered a broad range of industry-related knowledge and skills. AMTs perform routine maintenance on aircrafts and look for parts that need to be repaired or replaced that include brakes, wheels, electrical systems and wings. Candidates who pursue a career as an AMT must fulfill a few of the following requirements:

  • Completion of 1,920 hours of class time and hands-on training before taking the licensing exam
  • Being able to work on different engine systems from a variety of manufacturers, along with the ability to apply knowledge learned from manuals for troubleshooting
  • Have skill in mechanical, electrical, pneumatic, hydraulic, composite and sheet metal applications

Skills and responsibilities

For every flight that lands in the United States, there is a crew of AMTs who must inspect the plane and sign off on each protocol to ensure every facet of its mechanics is working properly and efficiently. Here are some of the skills and responsibilities required to do the job:

Qualifications and requirements:

  • Be licensed by the FAA
  • Must be conscientious and thorough
  • Adhere to demanding schedules
  • Work well under pressure


  • Address immediate problems and resolve them before takeoff, or defer problem and ground flight for later repair
  • Use full knowledge of industry standards and apply troubleshooting skills
  • Sign off on all protocols to ensure a plane is safe to fly

Tasks on a typical day:

  • Diagnose mechanical or electrical problems
  • Repair wings, brakes, electrical systems and other aircraft components
  • Replace defective parts using hand or power tools
  • Examine replacement aircraft parts for defects
  • Read maintenance materials to identify repair procedures
  • Test aircraft parts with gauges and other diagnostic equipment
  • Inspect completed work to ensure it meets performance standards
  • Keep records of maintenance and repair work

Opportunity for growth

AMTs who work in their field have the opportunity to move up the ladder within their company. Here is a snapshot of the different types of jobs in this field:

  • AMT―Performs routine maintenance and repairs
  • Lead Technician―Distributes, assigns and monitors work
  • Instructor―Teaches general familiarization classes for the types of aircraft that airlines use, along with instruction on aircraft systems, procedures, safety and compliance
  • Aircraft Maintenance Planner―Handles environmental studies, oversees land use planning and participates in business development activities
  • Maintenance Controller―Works in a central location to help troubleshoot problems on the ground
  • Maintenance Engineer―Modifies aircraft

Job outlook

According to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, job opportunities for aircraft and avionics equipment mechanics and technicians have been projected to grow 11 percent from 2020 to 2030—which is faster as the average for all occupations. And, according to Boeing, the industry will need as many as 626,000 new maintenance technicians over the course of the next 20 years. Did you know that aircraft mechanics and service technicians held approximately 130,100 jobs in 2020? Now, that is an impressive number! As far as salary is concerned, that sum continues to increase as well. In May 2020, the median annual wage for aircraft mechanics and service technicians was $66,440. With this impressive projected job growth and extreme demand, the time couldn’t be better to pursue a career in this field.

How Vaughn can get you there

Vaughn’s Aviation Training Institute (ATI) is a special gem among the College’s stellar degree programs. Led by industry expert and vice president of training, Domenic Proscia, the curriculum is designed to prepare students for high-paying and in-demand careers with the tools, modern technology, knowledge and hands-on experience needed to be successful in a variety of maintenance careers. Graduates go on to work in the utility, transportation and aviation arenas at companies such as the Metropolitan Transit Authority, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Con Edison, the Long Island Rail Road and major airlines such as Atlas Air (cargo), American Airlines and Delta Air Lines, among others. Vaughn’s ATI program includes the Aviation Maintenance (Airframe and Powerplant) certificate and Aviation Maintenance Associate in Occupational Science, both of which are approved by the FAA and will give you the skills you need to become an AMT.

Success Stories

A futureproof career can be only months away. Read the success stories of Vaughn graduates who are working and living their dreams as AMTs.

Mahdi Macbahi ‘13:Vaughn Graduate Finds Success by Blending Passion for Aviation Maintenance with His Love for Teaching”

Angela Wright ’20:Vaughn Student Angela Wright ’20 Pursues Lifelong Passion for Aviation Maintenance”

Discover the many degree programs that can open doors for you in the aviation industry. Which one is right for you? Read all about them in our blog, “Aviation Maintenance Degrees Fuel Career Opportunities.”

Is a high-paying career as a certified airframe and powerplant technician in your future? Vaughn’s ATI program can prepare you for the industry in as little as 16 months. Learn more about this exciting opportunity at our Virtual Information Session on Thursday, February 24 at 6 p.m. Register today!

Earning a college degree is serious business. After all, it’s your future. If you’re still deciding on a college major, you may want to consider a career that is STEM-related. According to the latest findings from Indeed, engineering degrees are topping the list as among the most valuable in 2021, since they pave the way to steady employment and higher levels of income.

This month, we break down the numbers and discuss how Vaughn College’s industry-focused engineering and technology degrees can set you on a clear path to a futureproof career.

Breaking down the numbers

To determine the findings in this study, Indeed examined 25 of the most useful college majors based on post-graduate employment and median annual wage as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Indeed goes on to define a “useful major” as one that will not only land you a paying job after college but also provide stability in a field that has low unemployment rates, high income and no need for further education.

Engineering and STEM majors top the list

An impressive showing revealed that engineering degrees claimed nine of the 25 majors, with math, science and technology ranking a close second. Interestingly, political science and business management and administration rounded out the lot. An even more impressive finding is how STEM majors held 19 spots among the 25 majors, with biomedical engineering taking the top place.

Engineering degrees rank in the top 10

Engineering graduates from Vaughn College are in high demand, and for good reason. The proof is in the numbers, as Indeed’s findings revealed that degrees in computer engineering, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering ranked among the most valuable college majors. And Vaughn’s leading-edge degree in mechatronic engineering—which combines the disciplines of mechanical, electrical and computer engineering—is proving to be a real game changer as our graduates are securing jobs in today’s most in-demand and sought-after fields. Vaughn’s world-class engineering degrees are more than just diplomas; they are pathways to a variety of industries that play critical roles in defining today’s modern life and society.

Read our blog, “Tips for Young Engineers—Vaughn Professor Draws from Years of Experience,” for great advice and tips on how young engineers can become top contenders in today’s hottest engineering market.

Accreditation counts

Part of Vaughn’s dedication to giving students the education and tools they need is ensuring that its engineering programs are accredited. The College’s general engineering programs are accredited by the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission (ETAC) of ABET ( Were you aware that the College’s mechatronic engineering program is one of only four mechatronic programs in the country that is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET? This distinction signifies the rigor of the program and reflects Vaughn’s dedication of giving students the education and tools they need to have successful careers in the field of engineering.

Becoming “the future you”

Vaughn graduates leave with more than just degrees. They leave with exciting, in-demand careers. We call it being futureproof. And we guarantee it. Did you know that 88 percent of Vaughn graduates—75 percent in their fields of study—are employed or continue their education within one year of graduation?* At Vaughn College, our graduates have a competitive edge to obtain jobs in the hottest markets in the engineering industry. To see where some of our engineering graduates have landed, check out these student profiles and lists of employers. You can also read the success stories of Atif Saeed ’20, mechatronic engineering major and Joan Cruz ’20, mechanical engineering major, who are both now employed as engineers at SpaceX.

You can also read about how the demand for engineers and technologists is increasing—now, more than ever—in our blog, “Demand for Engineers and Technologists Surge Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic.”

Do you have a passion for a STEM-focused career? Discover the possibilities that an engineering and technology degree from Vaughn can bring you. Apply today!


*Outcomes include data within one year of graduation for graduates who reported via survey. There were a total of 237 graduates in 2020. 178 reported an outcome for a 75% response rate. The 2020 graduate class includes September 2019, December 2019 and May 2020 graduates.

Engineering is playing a starring role in today’s hottest holiday gifts. Tech enthusiasts will have their pick of cool gadgets to include on their holiday lists this year because this industry has something for everyone, from the latest drones to a pet cam that can actually “feed” your pet treats—while you watch! And all these fascinating gadgets are made possible due to the advancements and cool innovation of today’s engineers!

So, this holiday season, we have compiled a list—and yes, we checked it twice—of today’s most innovative tech gifts that will have even Santa doing a double take. Get ready to see them for yourself. Which ones will you be getting for the tech lover in your life?


Excitement is soaring to new heights as today’s drones are taking the sky by storm (not literally, of course.) From drones for beginners to the most advanced models, UAV enthusiasts are discovering the freedom of flight from the palms of their hands. Powerful motors and the latest in hi-tech cameras are making drones the go-to gift for the aviation lover on your gift list.

Did you know that Vaughn College is one of the top colleges in New York that offers classes in UAV technology, usage, operation and drone law?― We also have communities for like-minded UAV hobbyists, such as the UAV club, where students and faculty members put their heads together to build, program and compete in top contests around the nation. If this sounds interesting to you, check out all the cool careers you can pursue as a UAV pilot in our blog, “Turn Your Love of UAVs into a High-Flying Career.”

Smart Phone Sanitizer and Charger

Did you know the average cell phone has 25,127 bacteria per square inch? That’s enough to make anyone cringe. Today, more than ever, it’s important to keep your hands clean and free of germs. There’s a new charger on the block that can handle this problem—and so much more. It’s not only cool but savvy, as it’s built with the latest engineering and technology that sanitizes your phone for germ-free (and worry-free) use.

Smart Water Bottle

Imagine getting inspiration directly from your water bottle to keep you on track with your water intake throughout the day? There’s a water bottle that does just that. LED smart sensors glow different colors to remind you to drink while Bluetooth technology helps to track your water intake. Smart water bottle creators definitely had a mechanical engineering background.

Wi-Fi Dog Camera

Want to make sure your dog isn’t acting up while you’re not home? Of course, you do. Now there’s a Wi-Fi dog camera that allows you to see and talk to your best friend and even “feed” him or her treats via an app! And there’s no training required—for the dog, that is. What kind of knowledge is needed to make a wi-fi dog camera? You guessed it – computer and electrical engineering for sure!

Robot Vacuum Cleaner

Is it a robot? Is it a vacuum? It’s the best of both tech worlds! Today’s autonomous robot vacuum cleaner can clean multiple rooms, detect obstacles and sense steep drops. (Sorry, it doesn’t do windows!) Some of these robot vacuums work with Alexa and Google Assistant so that you can clean and even schedule a vacuum from anywhere. They can even learn your cleaning habits and make intelligent suggestions. Now, that’s one smart vacuum! Did you know that Vaughn’s award-winning robotics team is the perfect embodiment of mechatronic engineering at its best? Are you interested in robotics? You could be a part of the next generation of engineers! What would you invent?

Check out our blog, “Journey Through Time: How Iconic Sci-Fi Television Shows Inspired Today’s Technology,” for a fun look back on how cartoon characters like “Rosie” the Robot Maid inspired some of today’s most innovative tech products.

3D Doodle Pen

Are you a doodler? Imagine doodling in 3D. Yes, it’s possible. Today’s innovators have designed a pen that helps you write or draw in 3D. You can even create and design art, too! Does this sound too good to be true? Unleash your creativity. Grab the closest piece of paper and check it out for yourself. Similarly, did you know that Vaughn’s engineering and technology department has their own 3D prototyping innovation center? This space offers students hands-on opportunities to bring their classroom knowledge to life by applying the concepts they learned and then turning them into physical objects.

We hope you enjoyed our selections of some of today’s most popular tech gifts. Which ones will you either be adding to your list.

An engineering and technology degree from Vaughn College could land you a job working in this leading field! You may even be the inventor of one of the industry’s next big tech gadgets! Discover all that’s possible. Apply today!

There’s excitement in the air this holiday season as travelers take to the skies to celebrate with their loved ones after being grounded for so long. With the latest changes and travel restrictions in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it may be difficult to keep up with all of them.

In this blog, we summarize the latest guidelines, important information and helpful tips to make your travel experience is a seamless one. And for any overzealous packers out there, we’ve even included important tips, so you and your carry-ons won’t get flagged at TSA. Here is what you need to know.

Staying safe in the air

If this is the first time you’ll be traveling since the beginning of the pandemic, you should be aware of how things are looking and operating differently these days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have updated their travel guidelines for domestic and international travel so that you can prepare to travel efficiently and safely. Here are some of the key things you need to know to protect yourself from COVID-19 while traveling:

  • Get vaccinated—If you are eligible to receive the vaccine, it is highly recommended that you do so. If you are not fully vaccinated, the CDC recommends wearing a mask in indoor public places in areas of substantial or high transmission and maintain physical distance when traveling. (Note: People are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose in a two-dose series—such as the Pfizer and Moderna—or two weeks after receiving a single-dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.)
  • Get COVID-19 tested—Changes prompted by Omicron now require all international air passengers, regardless of vaccination status, to have a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than one day before travel to the United States. You must show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight.
  • Wear a mask or face covering—Federal law requires all travelers to wear a mask or face covering throughout their travel experience, except when eating or drinking. Most carriers have a “zero tolerance” policy for failure to comply with the mask mandate.
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer frequently—Your hands can never be too clean. When in doubt, sanitize.

Be prepared

The holidays are notorious for being a hectic time to travel—which is only heightened by the pandemic. Airline experts agree that being prepared is the best thing you can do to make your journey as smooth as possible. Here are some great tips and suggestions to keep in mind before traveling:

  • Download the airline’s app—Using your airline’s app puts everything you need at your fingertips and will keep you informed on up-to-the-minute changes. From accessing your boarding pass to receiving notifications on flight status, you’ll be happy you took the time to carry out this easy step.
  • Book early—With millions of passengers expected to fly this holiday season, it’s best to book your flight early. This will not only ensure that you get a good seat, but you’ll also be able to secure the best fare possible.
  • Book directly with the airline—No one can foresee a cancellation, but in the event your flight is cancelled, or you need to make any changes, booking with your airline directly can make this process easier. If you book through a third party, like Expedia, Travelocity or Priceline, you will incur additional fees for changes.
  • Familiarize yourself with any travel requirements or restrictions at your destination—Some destinations—including international ones—may have specific restrictions or COVID-19 requirements, such a negative COVID-19 test before entering or leaving. Knowing and preparing for these ahead of time will save you unforeseen hassles and disruptions during your trip.
  • Arrive early—If you’re looking to reduce any stress at the start of your trip, this is perhaps the best advice you can get. The airlines suggest you arrive two hours ahead for domestic flights and three hours ahead for international flights. Once you’re there, you can sit back and relax, enjoy a beverage or a light meal, and maybe even do some duty-free shopping until it’s time to board.
  • Pack your patience—No one wants their flight to be delayed or cancelled, but it can happen. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s best take a deep breath and show kindness to yourself and those around you.

Packing tips

If you’re planning on packing gifts, there’s important information you should know regarding what should get packed and where—your carry-on or luggage. During this time of year, some enthusiastic travelers pack homemade goodies such as cakes, pies, jams and even gravy for their loved ones! Here are some tips to make sure you pack things in the right place, so that you make it through the TSA line without any hassles—or spills.

  • Carry-on bag—It’s safe to say you can pack baked goods such as cakes, pies, breads and other treats in your carry-on bag. Don’t be surprised, however, if your bag is flagged for them anyway. TSA agents must do their jobs and may ask you to open your bag to be sure that what you’re bringing is safe. As always, liquids are a big “don’t” unless they are the approved 3.4-ounce size. The exception to this rule is that now the CDC allows travelers to pack one 12-ounce bottle of sanitizer in their carry-on bags.
  • Checked luggage—Aside from your personal belongings, which include clothes, shoes and the alike, any liquid—including jams, jellies and chutneys and yes, gravy—should be packed in your checked luggage. If it can leak or spill, that’s a good indicator that you should pack it away. To protect your clothes, it’s recommended to place those items in a sealed plastic bag in the event of a spill.

Little extras that go a long way

It’s best to be overprepared, especially during these times. Here are some things you should consider packing to make your trip even safer and more enjoyable:

  • Extra snacks and small meals
  • Extra masks
  • Disinfecting wipes to clean your seat/tray table
  • Hand sanitizer

Celebrating safely

Gathering with family and friends this holiday season is an exciting time, but it’s important to do it safely. Here are some suggestions to ensure everyone is comfortable around each other.

  • Discuss everyone’s vaccination status ahead of time and have an open and honest conversation about expectations for celebrating together.
  • Do NOT attend or host a gathering if you are sick, have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to the virus.
  • Indoor gatherings should be well-ventilated by either opening windows or using fans.
  • Sharing serving dishes or utensils should be kept to a minimum—or avoided.
  • Clean, clean and continue to clean common surfaces and wash your hands frequently.

We hope you found our blog on safe holiday travel helpful.

From all of us at Vaughn College, we wish you a happy and safe holiday season.

If you have ever dreamt of working in the aviation industry, now is the time to get on board.

Airlines are gearing up for a long-awaited travel surge as passengers are dusting off their suitcases and taking to the skies in record numbers after having endured a year and a half of social distancing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. People also have pent-up savings from the pandemic that they are spending on leisure travel—and employers are more lenient than ever with remote work, which means work can literally happen from anywhere with a Wi-Fi signal. Traveler confidence is on the rise—fueling a comeback that is filling seats to almost pre-pandemic capacity. The industry is now playing catch-up to fill the shortage of pilots, maintenance technicians and other critical positions to keep up with demand.

Pilot shortage

As the airline industry continues to experience an accelerated recovery, the ongoing global pilot shortage may leave cockpits empty and passengers waiting in the wings. Some pilots from the baby-boomer generation are reaching retirement age, while others are taking early retirement. Additionally, furloughed pilots need additional training and flight hours to return to the skies. With these current circumstances, industry reports suggest that airlines may have lost as many as 25,000 to 35,000 pilots in 2020 alone. Even more alarming is the realization that these numbers may reach a whopping 60,000 by the end of the decade. This gap represents a significant opportunity for those who are seeking a career in aviation. If you’re looking for a futureproof career as a pilot, an aircraft operations degree from Vaughn can land you in the captain’s seat for years to come.

Breaking new pandemic travel record

The Fourth of July weekend proved how travelers are ready to break out of the pandemic stronghold. According to an article published in Forbes, air travel saw a 200 percent increase compared to the same time last year, with just over 10 million people passing through security checkpoints.

How airlines are preparing for the surge

As the number of travelers continues to increase, airlines are optimistic as they are putting plans in motion to meet the demand. United Airlines, for example, placed its largest-ever aircraft order with Boeing and Airbus that included 200 Boeing Max jets and 70 Airbus A321neos. The airline announced it expects to add 25,000 employees for the new planes, which include pilots and flight attendants. As part of its growth plan, United Airlines plans to improve upon the customer experience by adding roomier seats, more legroom in coach, seatback entertainment and larger overhead bins. Other carriers, like Delta Air Lines are looking to recruit more than 1,000 new pilots over the next 12 months, while Qatar is in the process of bringing back previously furloughed pilots and crew.

Air cargo sees continued growth

Unlike the commercial aviation industry, the air cargo market became one of the brightest sectors of aviation during the pandemic. One of the contributing reasons for this was that airfreight and cargo companies became an essential asset in the transportation of medical supplies and other lifesaving equipment during the pandemic. Today, it continues to experience surging demand and growth as air cargo volume is expected to increase 13 percent this year. Did you know that one-third of airline revenue comes from air cargo? This $60+ billion industry is just one more reason why now is the opportune time to pursue a career in the aviation industry. In addition, the Boeing Forecast points out that despite industry downturns, “the fundamentals driving passenger and air traffic demand remain strong.” Over the next 20 years, this Forecast predicts that 763,000 pilot and 739,000 technician positions will need to be filled.

Vaughn’s long-term relationship with Atlas Air has resulted in many alumni having landed internships and ultimately full-time positions with this renowned aviation cargo company. Atlas Air Chairman and Chief Executive Officer William J. Flynn stated, “Ten percent of the workforce in our New York headquarters are Vaughn College graduates. Many more graduates work elsewhere across our company. Several of our employees are now teaching at Vaughn. And countless more have mentored Vaughn students through its ongoing internship program. The work that Vaughn is doing is so critical to propelling this industry forward. Vaughn is developing some of the best and brightest minds of the workforce today.”

Karen Batson ’04 is a prime example of this. She graduated from Vaughn, works at Atlas and is now adjunct faculty member. She has been instrumental in hiring more than 30 of the College’s recent graduates to work there because she works hard to prepare her students for their careers. Check out the story of Vladislav Makarov ’16 and how he found success at Atlas Air with Batson’s help.

No better time than now to earn your aviation degree

If there ever was a time to launch a career in the aviation industry, it is now. For decades, Vaughn College has set the pace for educating and training its students for futureproof careers as pilots, airport managers, aviation maintenance technicians and other critical aviation roles. As one of the country’s premier aviation and engineering institutions, Vaughn offers invaluable, specialized hands-on training that gives students a competitive edge in the industry. Here are some examples of what sets Vaughn apart:

  • Simulator Complex—the College is home to a $1-million flight simulator lab featuring a fleet of training devices. The simulators not only provide a wide range of training scenarios, but they’re also approved by the Federal Aviation Administration, so you can log the simulator hours you need to earn your license.
  • Location—Vaughn is located adjacent to LaGuardia Airport and not far from John F. Kennedy International Airport, providing an environment for learning unsurpassed in activities, resources and faculty.
  • Industry Partnerships—Vaughn has numerous partnerships with airlines and flight training organizations, including Heritage Flight Academy where Vaughn students can practice flying. These partnerships ensure that Vaughn’s curriculum, technology and equipment is the latest and among the best in the US.
  • Accreditation—Vaughn’s aircraft operations program is accredited by the Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI). This degree has been developed to provide students proficiency in all areas of pilot skills to the certified flight instructor level.
  • Aviation Training Institute (ATI)—Vaughn is well known for its ATI program designed to prepare students for high paying and in-demand aircraft maintenance careers with the tools, modern technology, knowledge, and hands-on experience needed for a lifetime of success.
  • JetBlue Pilot Gateway Programs—Vaughn offers a University Gateway Program through JetBlue which allows its flight students to apply and if accepted, earn a conditional job offer for a position as a first officer at JetBlue.

A message from Vaughn

It is evident that the airline industry, as a whole, has an immediate need for trained pilots, maintenance technicians and airport managers to keep up with the ongoing demand. An aviation degree from Vaughn can be your ticket to a futureproof career. There’s no better time than now to start training to become either a pilot or any of the careers in aviation you always dreamed of. Apply today!

There’s excitement in the air—literally. The aviation industry is seeing a comeback in commercial air travel as passengers are feeling more confident taking to the skies amidst the continuing rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine. As air travel demand returns, airlines are starting to hire pilots again. Many are saying that domestic leisure travel has almost completely recovered at this point, after hitting an all-time low a year ago. Airlines are also promoting more pilots to captain and allowing them to bid on new positions to meet the demand. It’s an exciting time for the travel industry!

Domestic air travel comeback

According to Moody’s, an American credit ratings agency, the outlook for the global airline industry has been upgraded to “positive,” as this agency expects a strong rebound in U.S. domestic travel. To date, the countries leading the recovery are China, the United States and Australia. The business market, on the other hand, is seeing a slower recovery, since people continue to work remotely and are taking fewer business trips. Overall, the industry is adjusting and reevaluating their operations for a strong post-COVID-19 rebound.

Making connections

Pent-up travelers are expected to spread their wings this year and take long-awaited vacations to visit family, friends and popular tourism hot spots such as Florida, Hawaii and Las Vegas. This is good news for airport workers, security staff, air traffic controllers and maintenance technicians as more people are flowing through airports. The COVID-19 vaccine is proving to be an industry game changer, as it is giving people the comfort, security and safety to travel and venture out again. Airports have made safety a top priority.

Positive shifts for passengers

Slower business travel may mean greater perks for leisure travelers. Airlines are considering reconfiguring their cabins to make the business-class cabin area smaller and by improving the remaining space for premium-leisure passengers with the placement of premium-economy cabins. “The need for airport and aircraft layout designers has increased as a result of the pandemic, as airports are creating more outdoor spaces and airlines are making economy cabins larger,” said Dr. Maxine Lubner, Chair of the Management Department at Vaughn. “Our management programs are poised to prepare students for the changing demands of the industry.”

Vaughn programs continue to soar

For almost 90 years, aviation enthusiasts have flocked to Vaughn College to study the fields of aviation, engineering and management. As much as the industry has changed over the years, one thing has remained the same: Vaughn has adapted to the changes by offering new and cutting-edge coursework, programs and employment connections to meet industry demand. Vaughn’s faculty and staff have worked in the industries they teach, so they are deeply rooted and tuned in to industry and employer trends, especially as they’ve shifted throughout the pandemic.

Vaughn continues to educate, train and inspire future pilots, engineers and aviation professionals through its renowned bachelor’s, associate and certificate programs and experienced faculty. Vaughn’s aircraft operations and aeronautical sciences bachelor’s degrees are accredited by the Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI).

Looking to advance your career in aviation management? Vaughn’s master’s in aviation management degree program gives mid-level professionals the ability to rise in the ranks at aviation-related organizations.

The post-COVID-19 comeback is one more reason why flight students have an edge in pursuing a futureproof career as a pilot. And with the ongoing pilot shortage that has left airlines waiting in the wings, there’s no better time than now for students to earn their degrees.

Are you seeking a career as a pilot? Vaughn College has the aviation program to help you earn your wings in this futureproof career. Looking to keep your feet on the ground? Check out the other aviation degree programs, along with our degrees in engineering and technology and management. Discover all that’s possible with an aviation degree from Vaughn. Apply today!

There’s a new look on the horizon for commercial airline cockpits—and we’re not talking about the instrumentation. The airline industry is embracing its restart with a comeback that will be better than ever, with diversity and inclusion taking center stage.

Working the numbers

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 93.7 percent of professional pilots are white and 92.5 percent are male. The new industry initiatives hope to change these percentages. And the timing couldn’t be better as it comes on the heels of the nation’s ongoing pilot shortage.

Getting on board

Airlines are realizing they must broaden their scope when it comes to searching for talent. Many have pledged to make diversity a priority—at all levels—within their companies, and this encompasses hiring practices, management and company culture. Women, people of color and other underrepresented groups will be part of the industry restart initiative, keeping these demographics front and center when it comes to opening the doors of opportunity for careers in aviation.

United Airlines announced its new diversity goal and plans to train 5,000 new pilots by 2030, with at least half of them being women and people of color. Delta Air Lines committed to improving their efforts on a year-by-year basis. Last December, Delta joined forces with the founding members of OneTen, an organization of American corporations committed to hiring, training and promoting one million Black Americans over the next 10 years. American, Alaska Southwest and JetBlue are also making commitments to racial inclusion. Globally, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) launched its 25by2025 initiative, which aims to make aviation more gender-balanced by increasing the number of women in the industry by 25 percent by the year 2025.

Breaking barriers

For inner-city children of color, working in the aviation industry may not even be on their radar due to the lack of exposure and the high cost of becoming a pilot. Chairman of the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP) Joel Webley said airlines should increase their efforts with minority groups by putting an emphasis on providing paid internships for college students. Luckily, one of the many missions of Vaughn’s career services department is to create opportunities for students to get paid internships.

How Vaughn embraces diversity

The faces of the Vaughn College community are reflective of the diversity found in its home borough of Queens and of its core values of embracing diversity, welcoming students from all cultures, heritages and economic backgrounds. Also worth noting is how Vaughn’s aviation, engineering and technology, and management programs have attracted more women in recent years, and Vaughn President Dr. Sharon B. DeVivo is committed to growing female enrollment across all programs at the College.

“Vaughn’s diversity is our ‘super power,’” notes DeVivo. With 80 percent of our students coming from minority backgrounds and a majority, minority faculty and staff, we are committed to serving individuals from underrepresented groups and our graduates are changing the industry.”

DeVivo is also the national chair for the Youth in Access to Aviation Jobs in America Task Force and is working with a group of 20 national leaders to grow the pipeline of young people, specifically from underrepresented groups, pursuing careers in aviation and aerospace. The Task Force hopes to make their final recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration and Congress in 2022.

Vaughn makes it affordable

Vaughn College offers federal, state and institutional funding to help students pay for their education. In fact, 90 percent of Vaughn students are eligible for some type of financial aid, with the average package totaling more than $15,000 per year. Vaughn also offers several scholarships and programs like HEOP (Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Opportunity Program) that help students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds to attend college.

Vaughn ranked number one in upward mobility

Part of Vaughn’s success is reflected by its impressive position of having been ranked as the nation’s number one college in upward mobility. According to a 2017 study published in The New York Times, Vaughn College is noted as “an institution doing more to impact social mobility for those who start from less fortunate means,” and is also listed as the top institution for moving students from the bottom percentages to the top 40 percent in income. The article stems from a study conducted by The Equality of Opportunity Project entitled, “Mobility Report Cards: The Role of Colleges in Intergenerational Mobility.”

In addition, Vaughn ranks high in both economic and ethnic student body diversity among US colleges and is also a federally designated Hispanic-serving institution.

Do you have a passion for flying? An aviation degree from Vaughn College can set your career soaring. Apply today!

When we hear the word “aviation” our minds typically turn to airplanes and pilots. But did you ever wonder who is working on the ground to keep the industry moving and keep travelers, pilots and flight attendants safe?

This month, we spotlight the exciting careers you can pursue in the airport and airline management industry. If you have a passion for aviation—but would prefer to keep your feet on the ground—your futureproof career may lie within one of these sectors. Read on to learn more about these in-demand careers and the success stories of graduates from Vaughn who have landed their dream jobs doing what they love.

Air Traffic Controller

If becoming an air traffic controller has been on your radar, you may want to learn more about this exciting career. Air traffic controllers (ATCs) are so much more than “eyes in the sky.” On a daily basis, air traffic controllers are responsible for monitoring aircraft through the use of radar and other equipment. Air traffic controllers require a particular set of skills and a talent for teamwork to be successful.

Responsibilities of an Air Traffic Controller

In addition to coordinating and monitoring the movement of aircraft within safe distances—both in the air and on the ground—they have other responsibilities that include:

  • Controlling ground traffic at airport runways and taxiways
  • Issuing landing and takeoff instructions to pilots
  • Transferring control of departing flights to other traffic control centers and accepting control of arriving flights

Aviation enthusiasts from all walks of life are flocking toward a career in air traffic control for its unique benefits. If you are one of these enthusiasts, benefits of being an air traffic controller include:

  • Potential to earn a six-figure salary after first few years of service
  • Consistent work schedule
  • Mandatory retirement age at 56—with full federal benefits
How Vaughn Can Get You There

Vaughn can prepare you for this exciting career as an air traffic controller, and in less time than you might have imagined. Vaughn partners with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to offer the Air Traffic-Collegiate Training Initiative (AT-CTI). Why is that important? By attending an AT-CTI institution like Vaughn, you get to bypass the biometric screening that’s required by the FAA and could enter the training program faster. Vaughn is one of only 30 colleges in the country to offer this program and is the only program of its kind in the Northeast.

Vaughn Student Success Story: Air Traffic Control
Jessenia Diaz
Jessenia Diaz ’10

Vaughn College graduate Jessenia Diaz ’10 landed her dream job as an air traffic controller at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens. In December 2010, she graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor of science degree in airport management and general management, received the board of trustees award at spring convocation and was selected as the student commencement speaker for 2011.

“Pilots may have the best equipment on the plane, but they depend on us to navigate them from the ground. I love my job and wouldn’t trade working in New York for anything. My time at Vaughn gave me the knowledge and experience to get me where I am today.”

Learn more about what a day in the life of an air traffic controller is like.

Airport Security Manager

The role of an airport security manager is considered one of the most complex security jobs anywhere. There’s no doubt that the safety of airline passengers is a priority. Internationally, safety managers follow the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Standards and Recommended Practices (SARP) to help manage aviation safety risks in coordination with their service providers.

Airport Security Manager Job Functions

In the US, safety managers are responsible for promoting safety awareness by adhering to regulations from the FAA and other agencies, which include the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Homeland Security. Here are some of the essential responsibilities of a airport security manager:

  • Maintain the safety and security of the airport
  • Review and revise airport safety and security plans
  • Develop and implement employee safety policies and practices
  • Inspect runway lighting
  • Keep runways clear
  • Ensure airfield is protected
How Vaughn Can Get You There

Vaughn College offers an airport management degree program to prepare students for the various functional areas of aviation and business management. Located across from New York’s newly-renovated LaGuardia Airport, the learning environment at Vaughn College provides unsurpassed experiences for students. If airport management is a career you are considering, Vaughn will prepare you to work full-time in either an airport or related industry.

Vaughn adjunct professor Al Graser, who teaches airport and operations management at the College, shared his insights about the planning and security measures that were taken in preparation for the 2016 Olympic games, which were held in Brazil.

“Brazil put forth a major effort to prepare for the 2016 Olympic games. It appears this type of investment will ensure the security, service and operations for all users of the airport during the Olympic games and into the future.”

Airport Operations Manager

Airports operate under Part 139 Certification, issued by the FAA to ensure safety in air transportation. With that being understood, the role of an operations manager is to supervise and coordinate the day-to-day landside and airside operations of the airport. They must possess outstanding management and communication skills and have full knowledge of FAA rules, among other requirements. Here is snapshot of how it all breaks down:

Landside responsibilities:
  • Managing various airline terminals and concourses
  • Ensuring the safety and flow of roadways for buses, passenger cars, etc.
  • Overseeing retail operations, such as shops and restaurants
  • Assisting in the preparation of annual budgets for airport operations
Airside responsibilities:
  • Ensuring runways and taxiways are open and clear
  • Coordinating ground operations, including baggage and catering
  • Managing aircraft fueling
  • Communicating with air traffic control
  • Planning and coordinating the arrivals and departures of very important people (VIPs)
How Vaughn Can Get You There

Vaughn’s faculty, staff and curriculum work together seamlessly to ensure their students’ success. For Vaughn airport management graduate Otha Ward ’19 a summer internship, leadership roles and outstanding professors proved to be a winning combination in helping him land his position of airport operations agent at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK).

Vaughn Student Success Story: Airport Operations
Otha Ward
Otha Ward ’19

Otha credits Vaughn with helping him to pursue his dream of securing a rewarding career at an international airport.

“Vaughn is a special place,” he stated humbly. “The College has connections that set it apart from other institutions—making that one of its greatest assets. I’m grateful to everyone at Vaughn for helping me get to where I am today.”

Air Cargo Manager

The air cargo market has seen a recent surge in demand, as airfreight and cargo companies have become an essential part of transporting medical supplies and other life-saving equipment during the coronavirus pandemic. According to a recent market report—Global Air Cargo Market 2020-2024—released by Technavio (a global technology research and advisory company), the air cargo market is expected to grow by 16.75 million tons during this four-year timeframe. Freight and cargo managers are an integral part of this growing industry, as they are responsible for revenue management, quality control and understanding the needs of shippers to ultimately enhance profitability.

Advantages of Choosing Vaughn

Vaughn’s long-term relationship with Atlas Air has resulted in many alumni landing internships and ultimately full-time positions with this renowned aviation cargo company. Karen Batson ’04, Vaughn alumna and adjunct faculty member, has been instrumental in hiring more than 30 of the College’s recent graduates to work at Atlas Air because she knows how Vaughn prepares graduates for successful careers in the aviation field.

Vaughn Student Success Story: Air Cargo
Vladislav Makarov
Vladislav Makarov ’16

Vaughn College alumnus Vladislav Makarov ’16 landed his job at air cargo company Atlas Air in 2015, never imagining how valuable his dual bachelor’s degrees in airport and airline management from Vaughn would become—especially during an unforeseen pandemic.

“Vaughn’s curriculum prepares you for the field you’ll be working in by providing real-world practical examples that you can use right away,” Makarov said. “Unlike my experiences at other colleges, at Vaughn, you jump right into the core of what you will be doing in your field after graduation.”

Earn a Master’s Degree in Airport and Aviation Management at Vaughn

At Vaughn, you can take your passion to the next level with a master’s degree in either airport management or aviation management.

Master of Science in Airport Management

Did you know Vaughn College offers one of the few graduate-level programs in airport management in the Northeast? Our airport management degree program applies modern management concepts to the aviation environment by incorporating the most current research and state-of-the-art technology so that students can be prepared and adaptable to this ever-changing industry. If this career choice interests you, a master’s degree in airport management will not only expand your career opportunities but also enhance your risk assessment, management and leadership skills.

The master’s in airport management degree program requires 34 credits and includes a master’s project or thesis. Vaughn’s close proximity to world-class airports gives students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience and knowledge from instructors who are industry leaders. You can complete the master’s in airport management degree program in one year, but you also have the opportunity to schedule your courses over your own timelines.

Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Aviation Management

The Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Aviation Management will provide entry- or mid-level professionals with the skills and knowledge needed to advance in general management and aviation-related organizations. This course of study will provide the opportunity to learn and apply scientific methods to understanding and addressing business and aviation topics. Depending on a student’s academic background, they may be required to complete some basic business training. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Aviation Management has at its core 35 credits and will include an industry analysis project.

We hope you enjoyed learning about the various careers you can pursue in the aviation and airport management fields. Feeling inspired? Join us for our Virtual Open House on April 8 at 6 p.m. and “Meet The Future You.” We look forward to seeing you there!

As technology continues to advance, engineering roles in the manufacturing industry have evolved considerably. Despite all of these changes, manufacturing remains an in-demand career field with a bright outlook.

How technology is changing manufacturing

Yes, you might think that evolution and technical advancements in robotics, automation, artificial intelligence, 3D printing and machine learning would reduce manufacturing and engineering jobs. These breakthroughs, however, are actually creating jobs requiring more education and skills since some tasks are being covered by robotics and automation. As you might imagine, these highly skilled employees are also getting paid more. Manufacturing is becoming more efficient and precise in less time, increasing profit margins and customer satisfaction. For example, before 3D printing, it would take weeks to design and develop a prototype. Additive manufacturing has reduced that time to just a few hours so that more time can be devoted to testing and design optimization.

Promising careers that aspiring engineering students can look forward to considering include additive manufacturing or 3D printing, composite manufacturing and CNC machining (computer numerical control machines). And as these advancements continue, the demand to fill these positions will only become greater.

Vaughn is prepared to meet the engineering challenge

The COVID-19 pandemic has made manufacturers implement operating strategies that are flexible, resilient and innovative, which require skillsets to match. Much of the manufacturing workforce is on the verge of retirement, which is good news for engineering graduates who will be looking for jobs in the next few years. Vaughn’s engineering program prepares students for the ever-changing industries they will enter, like manufacturing. Vaughn’s professors have experience working in the fields in which they teach, which makes them able to help students apply their knowledge to real-life situations they’ll encounter on the job. This makes a Vaughn education that much more valuable. Vaughn students graduate with the skills they need to be successful in their fields right away.

The engineering and technology programs at Vaughn run the gamut from avionics to mechatronic engineering, among many other specialties. Two programs worth special consideration—which will give students who apply to them a competitive advantage—are our programs in mechatronic engineering and mechanical engineering: computer-aided design. Each program provides students with a well-rounded education that is complemented by hands-on experience, resulting in a solid foundation for a career in engineering. Vaughn also offers many certificate programs which can help working professionals advance their careers post-graduation.

There is a great demand for engineering professionals. If a career in engineering and technology is of interest to you, contact Vaughn College to get started.

Top Technology Trends: The Jobs to Look for in 2021

Technology is amazing. Even in the midst of a pandemic, technology is proving to be immune to any setbacks by constantly evolving and setting the pace for rapid advancements and exciting careers to come. This is promising news for engineering and technology students who are looking to build their futures around the industry.

Check out these top technology trends to watch for in 2021 and the jobs being created so you can take full advantage. See how a degree from Vaughn can be instrumental in giving you a competitive edge in these growing fields.

Artificial intelligence is a real thing

You may not realize it, but we use artificial intelligence (AI) more often today than ever before. How many times a day do you use your smart device to ask “Siri” a question? Lost count, right? Or did you ever wonder how social platforms like Facebook can recognize someone’s face in a photo you posted? The answer is AI and facial recognition. Yes, AI has been in our lives for the better part of this century, but new advancements have the market projected to soar to a $190 billion industry by 2025. And when it comes to cognitive and AI systems, global spending is expected to exceed $57 billion in 2021. (That’s billion with a “b.”) Along with these impressive numbers comes a lucrative salary—one of the highest in the industry—for those professionals who are skilled in the AI field. (Consider this: A machine learning engineer earns over $125,000 per year and an AI architect earns $145,000 per year.)

Some of the new job titles that are expected to be created—and filled—by this technology trend include:

  • Development, programming, testing, support, and maintenance.
  • Machine learning and automation—robot monitoring professionals, data scientists, automation specialists and content curators. It is predicted that AI, machine learning and automation will create nine percent of new US jobs by 2025.

Virtual reality and augmented reality: An industry game changer

Gamers know the excitement surrounding virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) all too well. Did you know 14 million AR and VR devices were sold in 2019? If you’re not up to speed on these technologies, here’s a simple explanation to refresh your memory: VR places the user in the environment while AR enhances the environment. So, how are these two technologies critical to our lives outside of the gaming world? Consider the example set by the US Navy, Army and Coast Guard. All three branches of the service use simulation software called VirtualShip to train their ship captains. Similarly, Vaughn aviation students have the opportunity to experience the thrill of flight in its $1-million, state-of-the-art flight simulator laboratory. And we civilians can expect 2021 to bring VR and AR into our lives on many different levels that include entertainment, marketing, education and even rehabilitation after an injury. This billion-dollar industry is a real game changer that will create more jobs and increased revenue. The AR and VR global market is projected to grow to $209.2 billion by 2022.

How to score a job in the VR and AR industry:

Employers in this exciting technology field consider candidates who have acquired basic programming skills as well as a positive, forward-thinking attitude. One does not need a specific skill set to work in the field, although some employers may require optics to get started. This is one technology trend to keep on your list!

Robotic process automation redefines jobs and creates new career opportunities

Robotic process automation (RPA) is another technology trend that’s worthy of great consideration. Although RPA entails the use of software to automate business processes typically done by live workers, it also creates new jobs in the industry. Research revealed less than five percent of occupations can be totally automated—which means RPA may be a way to redefine jobs instead of eliminating them.

Job opportunities for IT professionals:

  • Developer, project manager, business analyst, solution architect and consultant

A message from Vaughn

As 2020 comes to a close, we look to 2021 with fresh eyes for an exciting new year filled with hope and opportunity. Vaughn is dedicated to the success of each of its students. With technology changing before our eyes, now is the time to pursue the engineering and technology degree you’ve always dreamed of. Discover the possibilities of a futureproof career. Apply today!