PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Help wanted in the aviation industry. There is a critical shortage of airframe mechanics nationwide.

Haney Technical Center is trying to be a part of the solution by offering specialized programs that will bring good salaries for this industry.

Boeing Aviation estimated the aviation industry will need over 750,000 new aircraft mechanics in the next decade.

As much of the current aviation mechanics are nearing retirement age, they are retiring faster than they are being replaced.

“All the major manufacturers and all the major operators like FedEx, UPS, Northwest, Southwest, Delta, even Airbus and Boeing have said that in the next decade they predict to be over half a million mechanics shortage in the next decade,” said Aviation Instructor David Deaton.

With two separate programs involving aviation at Haney Technical Center, the training takes around 2 years in total.

“Right now at Haney you can get your airframe and powerplant certificate for the Federal Aviation Administration, that allows you to work on aircraft of all sizes and all kinds all throughout the world,” said Deaton.

Haney Technical Center has extended its registration to allow more students into the training field mid-semester.

“A lot of people don’t realize that you can actually start class in the middle of the year in the spring semester and continue right on through like you had started in the fall with your training,” said Deaton.

Students from all backgrounds and experience levels are invited to sign up for these programs. No prior experience is necessary.

The average salary of an airframe mechanic is around 72,000 dollars right out of school.

Haney also offers many different scholarships for these programs as well as financial aid to those who qualify.

“If you like to travel, aviation is the industry to be in. It allows them to go world-wide and make a good wage for their family. And there’s no time to start like right now, this is probably the best time to get into aviation that I’ve seen in my 30+ year career,” said Deaton.