(WACO, Texas) – Nathan Jordan, of Alvin, wants to stay on the ground as he pursues his career in the aviation industry.
He will soon begin his third semester pursuing an associate degree in the Avionics Technology program at Texas State Technical College’s Waco campus. He is also a resident advisor at the on-campus Village Oaks residential housing.
Jordan’s journey in aviation follows the footsteps of many others who have pursued careers in the aeronautics industry. Friday, Aug. 19, is National Aviation Day, which was declared in 1939 by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to honor the birthday of aviation legend Orville Wright.
How did you become interested in TSTC?
I just fell upon it. My dad knew the colleges around here. He knew there was an old Air Force base here, and that place eventually turned out to now be TSTC. I toured the Col. James T. Connally Aerospace Center and then applied to TSTC. When I walked into the building, I saw the airplanes outside and knew there was a lot I was interested in learning.
How did you become interested in Avionics Technology?
My dad was in the U.S. Air Force, and he worked in engineering for more than 20 years at Continental Airlines. The only things I was passionate about were planes and flying. After an injury I had, we made a compromise of me not doing pilot training.
What is it like being a resident advisor?
I became a resident advisor earlier this year during the spring semester. I was starting to get bored after I did everything I was done with for the day. I knew being a resident advisor would benefit me on my resume. It shows I am willing to work and adjust to a schedule and take on tasks. Planning an event is more fun than doing homework; I feel like I am able to be a kid again.
What are your plans after graduation?
What I am thinking right now is possibly work for the airlines a little bit to get my feet wet, and after that work for a bigger corporation like FedEx or UPS or an airline that handles bigger cargo. The bigger the cargo, the bigger the money. After that, I would like to open up my own hangar and have half of it as a car shop.
What is your advice for future college students?
Don’t act like the smartest person in the room; always be willing to learn and take criticism.
Avionics technicians in Texas earn a yearly median salary of more than $69,000, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s CareerOneStop website. By 2028, the state will need more than 1,900 avionics technicians.
TSTC offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in Avionics Technology, along with a certificate of completion in Avionics Installation Technician and an occupational skills achievement award in Avionics Technology at the Waco campus.
Registration continues for the fall semester at TSTC. For more information, go to tstc.edu.