Aviation Systems Technology FAQSFAQs

What programs are offered in aviation maintenance?
GTCC offers an Associate in Applied Science Degree in Aviation Systems Technology. This degree program prepares graduates for the FAA written and oral/practical examinations for the Airframe and Powerplant ratings.

Alternatively, you may elect to pursue the Certificate in Aviation Systems Technology by meeting the requirements for the FAA examinations, without completing the additional courses necessary for an Associate Degree. Students may also qualify for a Diploma if they take 1 English, 1 math, and 1 computer course in addition to the Certificate requirements.

Finally, we also offer periodic short courses in the following subjects: A&P Powerplant prep, A&P Airframe prep, Non-Destructive Testing (Eddy Current, Mag Particle/Liquid Penetrant, etc.), Aircraft Maintenance Familiarization (Boeing, McDonnell Douglas, and Airbus series) and Inspection Authority prep courses. These courses are generated by demand, and require at least 8 students to make a class.

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How long does it take to complete these programs?

Regardless of whether you pursue a degree, or just take the courses necessary to test for the A&P ratings, these programs take four semesters and two summer terms to complete – two full years.

The difference lies in the slightly heavier course load (21 extra credit hours) necessary for an Associate Degree.

The Continuing Education short courses range from several days to several weeks, depending on the course. Students who complete these courses receive a certificate of completion.

Airframe and Powerplant Licenses:

To obtain this you must:
1) Pass the General Comprehensive Test
2) Pass either the Airframe Comprehensive test and/or Powerplant Comprehensive test
3) Fill out the Application for Certificate of Completion.
4) Take written test immediately after graduation and receiving certificate.
5) Prepare for your O&P by studying and reviewing the Practical Test Standards for the General, Airframe, Powerplant.
6) Schedule an appointment with the Designated Mechanics Examiner.
7) Correctly fill out FAA Form 8610-2. Guidance on this matter is available in the Aviation Mechanic Examiner Handbook . You need at least two original copies.
8) Take this form to the Department Chair at GTCC for his/her signature.
9) Fill out the continuing registration form.
10) Pay examination fees.
11) Show up early on the day of your O&P
12) You must have a photo ID.
13) You must have original Knowledge Test results.
14) You must have Mechanic License if adding rating.


  • Lisa Pope
    336-334-4822 ext. 59011
  • Steve Saunders
    336-334-4822 ext. 59020

Can I Get Credit for Prior Experience?

In short, it depends. First of all, in order to have any experience recognized, it must be aviation related and documented. If your experience is military, your MOS and/or training records will be necessary. If civil experience is claimed, an FAA certified A&P must have signed the documents. Each case is unique and will be evaluated individually. Please contact the Department Chair for an audit of your records. In special cases, we can work together with you and the FAA to secure as much credit for your prior experience as justified and permitted by law.

Continued shortages of qualified mechanics may drive wages up in the near future, and mechanics with two or more years of experience can earn significantly more. Jobs Link (Indeed)

Is GTCC an FAA Part 147 approved maintenance school?

Yes. GTCC’s Aviation Systems Technology Program is the only community college in North Carolina certificated to award the Airframe or Powerplant or Airframe and Powerplant Rating. Course work includes all the systems and subsystems related to the rating(s) as required by 14 CFR Part 147. GTCC’s Aviation Systems Technology Program has been certified since 1984.

When can I begin the A&P program?

Students without prior aviation experience must start when the Fall term begins in August of each year, with the General Aviation Maintenance (AVI 110) curriculum. (If demand is sufficient, AVI 110 classes may be added during the Spring term).
Students with an aviation background (prior military, or other documented experience working with aircraft) should consult the Department Chair for aid in determining the appropriate starting point.

Is financial aid available?

Yes, the Aviation Systems Technology program does qualify for financial assistance. However, the money that a particular student receives depends on their own, and/or their family’s resources. Students wishing to learn more should contact the GTCC Financial Aid Office (336) 334-4822 (ext. 31186).

In 1998, new legislation took effect (the “Hope Scholarship”) which enables eligible students to claim tuition and allowable fee charges as a tax “credit” on their federal tax returns – the limits on this tax credit are high enough to cover all tuition and all allowable fees for the two year curriculum.

Additionally, eligible veterans may use the GI Bill to offset expenses, as long as they meet all other requirements of the VA.
For more information, contact the Office of Veterans Affairs (336) 334-4822 ext. 50521.

Are all of the courses taught at the T.H. Davis/GTCC Aviation Center located at the Piedmont Triad International Airport?

All aviation related courses are offered at the Aviation Center and we make every effort to offer the non-aviation courses and electives (for the degree program) there as well. However, if demand is not sufficient at the Aviation Center for non-aviation courses and the course is not offered on-line, then students may need to attend an occasional class at the main campus in Jamestown or one of the satellite campuses located in Greensboro or High Point.

Can I complete the program through evening courses?

Yes! Two parallel and identical courses are offered – one during the day and one in the evening. The daytime classes meet from 8:00 a.m. – 1:40 p.m., Monday through Friday, with non-aviation core classes and electives meeting during the lunch break to save degree students the hassle of having to attend separate classes on main campus.The evening classes meet from 5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Students attending evening classes and wanting to pursue a degree will have to schedule non-aviation courses separate from the aviation curriculum.

What is the graduates range for Aviation Systems Technology program?

Nationwide, there is a shortage of qualified mechanics, and that shortage is predicted to last for most of this next decade. Major employers include Triad International Maintenance Corp. (TIMCO), the General Electric Jet Engine Facility in Durham, NC, and US Airways in Charlotte, NC. In addition, a number of local fixed base operators (Atlantic Aero, Piedmont-Hawthorne Aviation Services, Atlantic Aero, Cessna Citation, and others) as well as companies like US Propeller and several locally based airlines currently employ our graduates.

Who should I contact at GTCC if I need more information?


Lisa Pope
336-334-4822 ext. 59011

Steve Saunders
336-334-4822 ext. 59020

You are welcome to come visit the Center and see first-hand what we have to offer, but you should make an appointment, because of class schedules. You may also call Jesse Cross, the GTCC Recruiter (336) 334-4822 ext. 50125.

Where is the T. H. Davis/GTCC Aviation Center located?

Click here to find our locations:

Aviation Campuses