SINGAPORE: Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) is one of the aviation sectors Singapore is hoping to lead in Asia. It is also tipped to be a major boost to Singapore’s aviation industry in the next few years.
To train more skilled talents, aviation firms are working with Republic Polytechnic, which recently launched a new hangar at its campus. The Aerospace Hub (The ARCH) will now be the training ground for the polytechnic’s aviation students.
About 300 students every year enrol in the three aviation—related diplomas at Republic Polytechnic.
The S$2 million facility is modelled after commercial hangars, the first of its kind among polytechnics here.
Industry experts said over 6,000 jobs, mainly in the MRO sector, are set to be created in the next three years.
Meanwhile, the polytechnic has partnered industry players to prepare its students for the demand. The companies include SATS, Diethelm Keller Aviation, Hawker Pacific Asia and Pratt & Whitney.
Some have hailed the school’s move to boost its students’ learning.
President and CEO of SATS, Tan Chuan Lye, said: "In theory, you can pick up a lot of skills from the polytechnics and schools. But I think the industry attachment, the exposure to the different situations is very beneficial and that’s something which is lacking. That’s another reason why we want to work collaboratively with the polytechnics."
The director of Republic Polytechnic’s School of Engineering Wang Jianguo said: "We really promote authentic learning — that means students need to have a real experience —— or at least (experiences that are) similar to industry practice. The hangar facilities are the best way to bring the industry practices back into the campus, to help them understand what goes on in the industry."
Dr Wang added that before the facility was launched, the school organised industry visits and seminars for students to get a feel of the industry.
The ARCH was conceptualised in October 2011, and it aims to meet growing demand for skilled manpower in the sector, and boost Singapore’s position as an aviation hub. It houses facilities typically found in an industry aircraft hangar, such as repair and testing workshops.
With the facilities, it can hold nine classes concurrently for students in the Aerospace Avionics, Aerospace Engineering and Civil Aviation courses.
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