GTCC graduate Spencer Moore is an avionics technician in Greensboro, N.C. Photo credit: Carrie Lilly

The Sky’s the Limit for Aviation Program Graduate

By Aleasha Vuncannon

Spencer Moore likes to be challenged. When the East Davidson High School graduate spotted an ad in the newspaper for Guilford Technical Community College’s aviation program, he was intrigued.

“I’ve always had an interest in airplanes and wanted to test out the avionics program,” says Spencer. “Avionics are more hands-on. You get to work with the whole airplane from nose to tail, top to bottom.”

Simply put, avionics are like the central nervous system and brain of an aircraft. It is where aviation and electronics meet to perform a myriad of functions. When the electrical system of an aircraft needs repairs, highly-skilled avionics technicians are there to troubleshoot, identify and repair the issue. The job demands attention to detail and a commitment to the highest standards of quality. Avionics technicians work on flight-critical systems that impact both passenger and crew safety. From navigation to mechanical systems to cabin entertainment, avionics are everywhere.

It is this type of broad challenge that appealed to Spencer.

“I like troubleshooting. It makes me use my mind more and you have to know what is going on. You have to know how the systems work and how they communicate with each other,” he says.

The two-year Aviation Electronics Technology program at GTCC provides students with the basic knowledge and skills to enter the field as an avionics technician.

“I tell students on the first day that I can get them a job. The aviation job market is that good right now,” said GTCC’s Director of Aviation Programs Nicolas Yale. “All you have to do is finish the program and obtain the required certifications. Through internships, we help provide a pathway for students to build relationships with industry contacts so they are ready to get a job after graduation.”

Spencer Moore completed the Aviation Electronics Program and graduated in May 2016. After touring the Textron Aviation Service Center located at the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro, N.C., Moore’s desire for a career in business aviation took flight.

“The tour really opened me up to a different type of airplanes. I saw the larger and mid-sized business jets and that interested me. It pushed me into that side of aviation,” said Moore.

Moore is now employed as an avionics technician at the Textron Aviation Service Center where he performs installations and repairs on small to mid-size aircraft like the Citation Mustang and Citation Latitude.

“We have different types of aircraft over there. Every day you are learning something new,” he said.

Now that Spencer has a full-time job in the industry, he is working toward expanding his expertise by obtaining an Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) license.

“Avionics is focused strictly on the electrical systems of an aircraft. With an A&P license, I will be able to do any type of maintenance work on an airplane,” said Moore.

Moore is enrolled in GTCC’s Aviation Systems Technology program and will graduate this summer. He likely will not stop there. The sky is truly the limit for this graduate. He says he would eventually like to work on a new aircraft development program.

# # #