News: Ethiopian Airlines Academy, bridging manpower gap in African Aviation

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The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently projected that the African continent will become one of the fastest-growing aviation regions within the next 20 years, with an average annual expansion rate of almost 5%.

With the attendant growth in the aviation industry in the continent, the demand for more skilled aviation professionals will surge requiring about 29,000 pilots to operate commercial aircraft fleet in the next 20 years, according to Boeing ‘s released 2018 Pilot & Technician Outlook.

Boeing said the heightened pilot demand will be driven by the anticipated doubling of the global commercial aircraft fleet, along with an increase in passenger travel and tightening labour supply.

“Despite strong global air traffic growth, the aviation industry continues to face a pilot labour supply challenge, raising concern about the existence of a global pilot shortage in the near-term,” said Keith Cooper, vice president of training and professional services for Boeing Global Services, in a statement.

With the need to bridge the manpower deficit in the continent, Africa’s largest Aviation Group, and SKYTRAX certified Four Star Global Airline, with state-of-the-art, aviation training academy has continued to meet the manpower need of the industry in Africa.

Established in 1956, Ethiopian Airlines Aviation Academy (EAA) is an ICAO TRAINAIR Plus member and IATA authorized global training center. It is the largest Aviation Academy in Africa with full capabilities in all aviation professions and with the capacity to train 4,000 students a year.

Thousands of overseas trainees, including pilots from around 50 countries have attended trainings at the Academy. Until the latest graduation on March 9, 2019, EAA has trained and graduated a total of 17,509 Aviation Professionals in different Aviation fields, of which 1585 are foreign nationals from different African countries and elsewhere.

Today the Academy is increasing its scale & scope to better positioned to cater for the growing needs/ demands of Aviation Industry in Africa and the Middle East.

The academy encompasses five independently running aviation training schools, catering to both local and international aviation training needs.

Last year, the academy and the University of Mississippi, the largest public research university in Mississippi, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to introduce different aviation related training programs into the existing courses of Ethiopian Aviation Academy (EAA).

According to, the training programs to be introduced include Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC), Aviation Executive EMBA and a four-year engineering degree program aimed at upgrading EAA’s existing two-year Aircraft Maintenance training. The MOU was signed in April 2018 by Ethiopian Group CEO Mr Tewolde GebreMariam and Professor Noel E.Wilkin, Provost & Executive Vice Chancellor of The University of Mississippi, at the premises of the University in the presence of dignitaries from the University’s academic community as well as Managing Director of EAA.

Commenting on the signing of the MOU, Ethiopian Group CEO Mr Tewolde GebreMariam said: “In today’s increasingly competitive air transport business, Airlines need well trained and highly skilled management and employees to compete and succeed in the market. As part of our Vision 2025 Strategic road map, to enhance and upgrade the trainings given at our Aviation Academy, we are very happy to sign this agreement with the University of Mississippi which will introduce Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC), Aviation Executive EMBA and a four-year engineering degree program.

The Ethiopian airlines aviation academy is structured into five strategic areas to train and develop skilled aviation professionals in the Africa. The schools include: Pilot Training; Cabin Crew Training; Commercial Training School; Aviation Maintenance Technician School and Leadership and Career Development Training School.

The Pilot Training School provides Commercial Pilot License training program, Multi-crew Pilot License (MPL) training and licensing program that is adopted by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). While the Cabin Crew Training School provides basic and recurrent courses for Ethiopian Airlines recruits, other customer airlines, and individual trainees.

The Commercial Training School of the academy provides basic and recurrent trainings in Reservation, Fares, Ticketing, Airport and Cargo Operations, Ground operations, Airline Accounting, Sales and Marketing trainings to new recruits and Ethiopian employees.

Aviation Maintenance Technician School provides basic and recurrent training programs for Aircraft Maintenance Technicians, Power Plant Technicians, Aircraft Structure and Avionics Technicians.
It is approved by the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority (ECAA), AFRAA, FAA, IOSA, EASA, etc.

And the Leadership and Career Development Training School It offer a wide range of courses for supervisory and managerial personnel with the aim of developing the leadership and managerial skills of Ethiopian and other organizations’ personnel.
The vision of Ethiopian Aviation Academy is to be the most competitive and leading aviation training centre in Africa by 2025.

By Friday Nwosu

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