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LETU Aviation Students Win 1st Place in PAMA Maintenance Competition


LeTourneau University aviation students won first place in the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA) competition at Alliance Airport in Fort Worth Feb. 27. The competition requires students to complete maintenance tasks similar to those they would encounter in their careers as Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) mechanics.

PAMA is the premier aviation maintenance organization for aviation maintenance technicians which fosters continuous improvement in aviation safety.

LETU aeronautical science majors competing include seniors Ben Bunn and James Galan, both of Longview, Texas; senior Travis Hancock of Ovilla, Texas; junior Eric Van Oeveren of Jenison, Mich.; junior Timothy Kunkel of Shreveport, La. Student coach was junior Dylan Trochim of Longview.

"I am very proud of our students, not only for their excellence in competitions like this, but for the excellence and integrity they exhibit daily," said LETU Dean of Aviation and Aeronautical Science Fred Ritchey.

This year marks the seventh time LETU has competed in PAMA competition and the fifth time LETU students have taken first place.

"These five students who competed this year represented Christ and LeTourneau University well," said LETU School of Aeronautical Science instructor and faculty sponsor David Tesser. "They competed against schools from Texas and Oklahoma, working hard on 12 maintenance tasks. They managed an amazing eight perfect scores.

"LETU students make an impact every time they compete," Tesser said. "That shows from the positive comments we receive from the judges and other faculty. I am very proud of these men."

The competition required intense concentration. The students were graded on safety wiring, torquing, riveting, and precision measurement. They rotated to a dozen different stations with only 15 minutes per station and were graded by judges who were from the aviation industry or aviation education. Individual scores were based on the final product, but also on safety and tool management, which meant organizing their tools and discarding debris.

Prior to the competition, the students met on weekends to practice for the competition.

LeTourneau University is the premier polytechnic university in the nation where educators engage students to nurture Christian virtue, develop competency and ingenuity in their professional fields, integrate faith and work, and serve the local and global community. The LETU aviation program is the only comprehensive university-level aviation program in the state of Texas.
LETU offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs across a range of disciplines and delivery models at LETU's residential campus in Longview, Texas, and in hybrid and fully online options at centers in Dallas and Houston.

Claiming every workplace in every nation as their mission field, LeTourneau University graduates are professionals of ingenuity and Christ-like character who see life's work as a holy calling with eternal impact. For additional information, visit www.letu.edu.

Categories: Aviation