Make Your Career Soar


We take pause this week from our regular aerospace retrospective and consider a topic of a different nature. Such a change-of-pace seems quite natural as summer wanes and legions of new and returning education seekers troop through the portals of our country’s universities. However, rather than focus on the matriculating crowd, we will set our sights on those who have completed their formal education and are now members of the American aerospace workforce.

Education does not end with the granting of a diploma or even a collection of diplomas. This is especially the case in today’s aerospace industry which encompasses so many disciplines and technical specialties. And the list grows as new technology emerges. For the successful aerospace engineer, learning and gaining technical knowledge is truly a daunting career-long process.

The majority of one’s technical skills, critical knowledge, and lessons-learned are acquired on the job. However, professional short courses also serve a vital role in one’s career development. A well designed and capably taught aerospace professional short course provides the engineer with critical specialty knowledge and disciplinary technical context in a very short amount of time. And it does so at low cost.

Aerospace professional short courses are most typically taught by subject matter experts (SME’s) who have successfully plied their trade over a career that often spans decades. These SME’s know their specialty area intimately by virtue of this vast experience. Further, they are often passionate about and notable contributors to their technical discipline.

Somewhat fortuitously, the majority of SME’s who teach aerospace professional short courses are often very good technical instructors. They understand what the learner needs to know and how to convey that knowledge. A capable aerospace professional short course instructor also has an uncanny ability to inspire his or her audience to learn and grow. That kind of instruction is infectious and makes it a true pleasure to learn.

While there is certainly more to say concerning the merits of the aerospace professional short course, it seems appropriate to end this session with the following observation. Among the most valuable aspects of the aerospace professional short course are (1) the review and understanding of key aerospace historical events and (2) the transmittal of hard-won engineering lessons-learned.

In the fast-paced, competitive, high-stakes and cost-conscious aerospace market of the 21st century, the victory will most often go to those who learn from and clearly remember the experiences of the past.


Posted in Aerospace, Training

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