Quantifying the impact of postsecondary education on the workforce across Alaska industries has long-been a challenge for the state and university. In an effort to address this, the State Department of Labor and Workforce Development partnered with the University of Alaska (UA) to create workforce reports that demonstrate UA graduate outcomes in 10 key industries: administration and finance, aviation, construction, fisheries and marine science, health, information technology, mining, oil and gas, and teacher education. Each report highlights the largest and fastest-growing occupations within each industry that require postsecondary education, average wages earned over time, the percentage of graduates employed across Alaska’s six economic regions, what industries they work in, and how they contribute to the Alaska hire rate. More than 17,700 UA graduates over a ten year period were included in the report data, and 96.3 percent are working in Alaska today averaging $69K annually. The reports can be found at https://www.alaska.edu/research/wd/reports.php.
Over the summer, the University of Alaska Fairbanks received a new plane for students to work on at its Community and Technical College, donated by Bering Air Inc, out in Nome. Read the full story here.
Located a 10-minute drive north from UAA’s Main Campus and right on Merrill Field lies the Aviation Technology Center. While the historic Anchorage airport is a natural home for the university’s aviation programs, the separation can sometimes make it easy to forget about that corner of campus.
Despite the distance, the Aviation Technology Division (ATD) is anything but an aside. Housed under UAA’s Community and Technical College, ATD boasts a nearly 100 percent job placement rate for graduates from all four of its programs: aviation maintenance technology, air traffic control, professional piloting and aviation administration.
“It is unlikely that you can go to an aviation employer in this state and not find a graduate from our programs,” says Paul Herrick, UAA’s new ATD director. “The way we state it is that everyone who looks for a job, gets a job. You have to not want a job to not get one. Our students’ large presence in Alaska aviation is a legacy that we’re really proud of.”
That legacy includes a whole range of positions with small operators, regional airlines, major air carriers and even the Federal Aviation Administration.