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Aviation program gets loan of helicopter

After two long years of negotiating and pleading, the college is finally on its way to having a helicopter available as a training tool.

The college’s aviation program received a loan of a Canadian Coast Guard helicopter, originally listed for $487,000. For now, it has been installed at the Canadian Air and Space Museum in late December 2016.

As of now, the helicopter is being worked on at the museum in preparation for students of the aircraft maintenance technician program while it remains on a loan agreement for this year.

“The college is hopeful that we can finalize an agreement permanently to use it as a training aid for the college program,” said Bruce Dwyer, program coordinator.

Although the helicopter is never to be flown, it will be used as a maintenance task training tool for students. Students will disable parts, learn how the different systems work and inspect the helicopter for any damage. Groups will spend weeks taking it apart and learning all about it.

“We just don’t have space right now for it,” said Dwyer. “We need a bigger hanger, which will be a long term project.” According to Dwyer, the proposal has been made, as well as the design of the hanger.

There is space provided to build it at the museum. The next step is to work on funding to go ahead and build it. “I think it’ll be a huge win in the long run. For both the museum and the college.”

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