Nacianceno, of Edinburg, developed an interest in the aviation field through a family friend.
“Our friend worked as an aircraft mechanic for American Airlines in Fort Worth,” he said. “He explained that he worked on airplanes, and it caught my interest. Most people never hear about that type of career. He mentioned an Aviation Maintenance program at TSTC in Harlingen. I spoke with program director (Leo) Guajardo on the phone to learn more about the program and the career pathway. So I enrolled.”
Nacianceno graduated with Associate of Applied Science degrees in both Aircraft Airframe Technology and Aircraft Powerplant Technology in 2022. Additionally, he earned both Airframe and Powerplant Federal Aviation Administration certificates that same year.
Three months after he graduated from TSTC, he accepted a job as a full-time aircraft maintenance technician with RAM Aircraft in Waco.
“I made repairs to the structure of an airplane such as the sheet metal that goes over the structure of the aircraft,” he said. “I also did full engine installations with a turbocharger, throttle body, exhaust and other components.”
During that time Nacianceno became a new father. He made the decision to relocate his family to the Rio Grande Valley.
“I want my daughter to be around family while she grows up,” he said.
When a job opportunity arose with McCreery Aviation Co. in McAllen, Nacianceno accepted a job there as a full-time airframe and powerplant mechanic.
“I’ve been with the company for almost two months,” he said. “I perform inspections and maintenance on several types of aircraft for private companies.”
Nacianceno is enjoying the company’s work culture.
“Everyone is friendly,” he said. “The team is willing to help if you need assistance.”
Tony Prats, director of maintenance for McCreery Aviation Co., said he appreciates that Nacianceno is willing to learn.
“I knew we had to make Adrian part of our team from the moment I first met him,” Prats said. “It was an instantaneous positive perception of his great attitude. He is respectful, easy to train, and ready to perform the work that he’s assigned.”
“I learned about aircraft engines in college,” he said. “At McCreery, there are vast types of aircraft. It’s been great exposure to learn and repair them.”
Leo Guajardo, TSTC’s Aviation Maintenance program director, said Nacianceno is a gifted young man with great potential.
“Adrian’s a man of professional character, and that attribute will follow him through his career,” Guajardo said. “His presence in the classroom elevated his peers and challenged me to be the best instructor.”
Nacianceno’s future plans include enhancing his skills.
“I want to improve my knowledge and skills as an airman and see where life takes me,” he said.
According to onetonline.org, aircraft mechanics and service technicians in Texas earn an average of $67,680 a year. The website projected that there would be a 16% increase in the number of such jobs in the state from 2020 to 2030.
TSTC offers Associate of Applied Science degrees and certificates of completion in both Aircraft Airframe Technology and Aircraft Powerplant Technology at its Abilene, Harlingen and Waco campuses.
Registration for TSTC’s fall semester is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.