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Museum of Flight to Host US Senate Committee on Science and Transportation Field Hearing

Oct. 24 hearing looks at aviation workforce: training needs and challenges

The Museum of Flight

SEATTLE – On Monday, Oct. 24, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Chair of the Aviation Operations, Safety and Security Subcommittee, will hold a U.S. Senate field hearing at The Museum of Flight titled, “The Aviation Workforce: Training Needs and Challenges.” The hearing is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the William M. Allen Theater, and is open to the public. Museum admission is required to enter the exhibition galleries.

The Aviation Subcommittee’s hearing will examine both local and federal efforts to foster the development of a 21st century aviation workforce to meet the needs of a rapidly growing aerospace industry. The aerospace industry in Washington state currently employs 83,700 people, representing more than one-sixth of all aerospace workers in the nation. In 2010, Washington state exported over $23.3 billion in aerospace products – thirty percent of all U.S. aerospace exports.

A key concern for the aviation industry, stakeholders and government leaders is making sure there are enough skilled workers to fill aviation-related jobs.

Key issues to be addressed at the hearing include:
Employer and worker needs;
Efforts to develop and expand educational programs that support aviation and aerospace training;
Workforce initiatives that establish, prepare and grow a pipeline of students who are career-ready for scientific, technical, engineering, and math (STEM) opportunities;
Life-long learning strategies;
Government efforts to partner with industry to foster innovation and collaboration.

Panel I
Mr. Tom McCarty, President, Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA), International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers Local 2001
Mr. Mark Seiber, Plant Manager, GE Aviation, Yakima, Wash.
Mr. Randall Julin, General Manager, Absolute Aviation Service, Spokane, Wash.
Mr. Jim Bearden, Administrative Assistant, Aerospace Machinists Industrial – District Lodge 751, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers

Panel II
Mr. James Hermanson, Chair, Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, University of Washington
Mr. Michael Greenwood, Senior Manager, Aerospace Academic Alignment Team, The Boeing Company
Ms. Laura Hopkins, Executive Director, Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee
Ms. Cyndi Schaeffer, Executive Director, Edmonds Community College Business and Training Center
Mr. Joe Dunlap, President, Spokane Community College
Ms. Reba Gilman, Principal and Chief Executive Office, Aviation High School, Des Moines, Wash.

*Not necessarily in order of appearance.

The non-profit Museum of Flight is one of the largest independent air and space museums in the world. The Museum’s collection includes more than 150 historically significant air- and spacecraft, as well as the William E. Boeing Red Barn® — the original manufacturing facility of the Boeing Co. The Airpark includes outdoor displays with the first jet Air Force One, a Concorde airliner, and the first Boeing 747 jumbo jet. The Museum aeronautical library and archival holdings are the largest on the West Coast. The Education Office offers weekend family programs, programs for students and educators, and overnight camps for children. McCormick & Schmick’s Wings Café is on site.

The Museum of Flight is located at 9404 E. Marginal Way S., Seattle, Exit 158 off Interstate 5 on Boeing Field half-way between downtown Seattle and Sea-Tac Airport. The Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $16 for adults, $14 for seniors 65 and older, $13 for active military, $9 for youth 5 to 17, and free for children under 5. Group rates are available. Admission on the first Thursday of the month is free from 5 to 9 p.m. courtesy of Wells Fargo.

For general Museum information, please call 206-764-5720 or visit

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