High school students certify in aerospace manufacturing

CEDAR CITY, Utah (ABC4 Utah) - Teens from small towns are dreaming big thanks to the Aerospace Pathways Program.

Twelve high school students are now certified in aerospace manufacturing.

“I feel way lucky that It’s a great experience to be able to learn how to come and make airplanes,” said Roman Dotson, a Aerospace Pathways Program graduate.

Dotson grew up in the small town of Enoch, population of less than 6,000. Friday, he was one of the first twelve teens in the area to graduate with this certificate—a huge step in securing job stability at a young age.

“These students have the opportunity to go anywhere in manufacturing. These companies are willing to hire these students on the ground floor and teach them all kinds of skills with the opportunity grow with the company,” said Ginger Chinn with the Governors’s Office of Economic Development.

“I’m super proud it’s really a great experience being able to graduate with these kids,” said Alex Kofford, a Cedar City graduate.

“The average wages in the aerospace industry are nearly 200% of the Utah average wage,” said Ginger Chinn.

The program is part of a big push by Governor Herbert to bring 40,000 news jobs to the state in just four years, focusing on rural areas. Roman doesn’t plan to stop his education. He has his sight set on college and now feels it’s more possible than ever.

“Hopefully I can pay for college and not go into debt with it,” said Dotson.

“Opportunities to work for Boeing, Orbital ATK, Hexcel. The sky’s the limit,” said Chinn.

“Kind of feel like I’m on top of the world,” said Dotson.

All of the students I talked to have job interviews lined up—many of them right here at the college.


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