Julia Faris (left), a TSTC aviation maintenance graduate, and Matt Stokes, a TSTC aviation maintenance student, recently were hired as full-time aircraft airframe and powerplant mechanics with Envoy Air.

(HARLINGEN, Texas) – The aviation maintenance program at Texas State Technical College is solidifying its reputation by producing the next generation of aircraft technicians, and now one of its graduates and one of its students are recipients of new job opportunities.

Julia Farris and Matt Stokes have accepted jobs as aircraft airframe and powerplant mechanics with Envoy Air in Abilene, a subsidiary of American Airlines Group.

Farris, who recently graduated with Associate of Applied Science degrees in Aircraft Airframe Technology and Aircraft Powerplant Technology, said she is ready to begin her new career in January.

“I want to further my training, learn more about how engines work, and see the latest innovations that aviation has to offer,” she said.

Prior to her graduation from TSTC, Farris became the first woman in the program to earn an Aircraft Powerplant Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certificate in more than a decade.

Stokes, an Aircraft Airframe Technology and Aircraft Powerplant Technology student, is on track to graduate after he completes his academic core courses in the spring.

“I’m looking forward to expanding my knowledge, becoming a proficient aircraft mechanic, and traveling,” he said.

Stokes gained some industry experience when he worked as a part-time aircraft mechanic at Southmost Aviation in Brownsville. He is an FAA-certificated powerplant mechanic and is in the process of testing for the FAA Aircraft Airframe certificate.

Angel Arrazola, operations recruiter for Envoy Air, said Farris and Stokes’ professionalism during their interviews was impressive.

“Julia and Matt did an outstanding job by answering every technical question without hesitation,” he said. “That goes to show you the quality of the aviation program they come from. Envoy Air looks for people with excellent attitudes who are willing to learn and go that extra mile.”

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 spring semester is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.

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