GE Aviation Plant Gives Rise to New Partnership

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Students in the program will work toward an associate's degree at Ivy Tech in Lafayette. Students in the program will work toward an associate's degree at Ivy Tech in Lafayette.

Officials say a partnership between Purdue University and Ivy Tech Community College is a result of the more than $100 million General Electric Aviation plant in Lafayette. Students who eventually complete the co-enrollment program will earn an associate's degree from Ivy Tech and be set up to take an industry certification exam administered by Purdue.

The Ivy Tech degree will be in aviation maintenance technology and have a power plant concentration, while Purdue will provide a power plant Certification exam, which is issued by the Federal Aviation Administration. The certificate must still be approved by the FAA.

Purdue Polytechnic Institute School of Aviation and Transportation Technology interim head John Mott says "the plant has the potential to employ a large number of graduates from the Ivy Tech/Purdue program," he said. "In addition, the aerospace industry in Indiana is very large." GE Aviation officials emphasized at the time of the 2014 announcement a major reason for selecting Tippecanoe County was the skill level of the talent produced by Indiana colleges.

Ivy Tech Lafayette Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Todd Roswarski says "this aviation partnership is the latest example of how Ivy Tech, Purdue and area employers such as GE Aviation work together to foster an educated and skilled workforce for the betterment of Indiana's economy. Providing opportunities for Ivy Tech graduates to enter the workforce or continue their education at Purdue and other four-year institutions is the core of Ivy Tech's mission."

Applications are due by December 1 for spring classes. The GE Aviation plant will produce the LEAP jet aircraft engine and is expected to employ some 200 workers by 2020.

Purdue says the degree could be applied toward a bachelor's degree through its aeronautical engineering technology or aviation management programs.

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