Congratulations on making the decision to join such an exciting and enjoyable career. This field has many rewards and great opportunity. As with any career field, there are many things you need to research before jumping in head first. Hopefully this report will help you in your search for the first steps to becoming and aviation maintenance technician. Take time to read this, it could save you months of headache, stress and frustration. Before attending, please watch College Inc, a special investigation by Dateline NBC. (For profit schools)
The Aviation Institute of Maintenance is a business. It is not a school. They rely on heavy marketing and false promises to get students in the door. They have pretty girls who pitch the school like it is an honor to be accepted. It is not, they let in anyone who qualifies for financial aid..ANYONE. Even felons. [continued below]....
Once you are a student, you are treated like garbage. You are only allowed to use one entrance in the whole building. Even to talk to the administration about billing, schedule or other issues, you must walk outside and around the to office. You are only allowed water in clear plastic bottles in class. There are no windows, clocks or trash cans in any of the classrooms. Since AIM is a FAA part 147 school they must log your hours.
You need 1800 logged hours to graduate. If you miss 1 minute you make up 15 minutes. They are called deficiencies. To make up your time, you must stay after school and copy words out of a book. 500 words an hour. So if you miss one day, prepare to write 3,000 words, which they count. If you fail to make up the time you fail, which means you must pay to take the course again.
They also treat faculty like disposable servants. You can have the best professor with 30 years of knowledge and they treat them like they would fire them for not having their shirt tucked in. The director of the school treats all employees in a way that is hard to fathom. If you came across this review while looking at working at AIM, RUN,RUN,RUN.
AIM is progressively making it harder for students to make up their missed time. They add sneaky little rules to fail a student. For example, you can only make up time with the instructor you had, they rotate them back and forth from day to nights every 5 weeks. If you are suppose to write a 3000 word "essay" and come up 5 words short, you fail. Even though you made your time up. Again, this is not an FAA rule, only AIM's. Making it hard to catch them. More students that fail = more profit. It is that simple.
Apart from having a new building, the tools are the cheapest they can find. Literally, Harbor Freight junk. All of their training aids are from auctions from real aviation schools throw-aways. Ever riveted with an air hammer? You will at AIM.
VETERANS----------Watch them closely. If you have ANY military aviation experience refer to FAR 65.71-65.77. Chances are, your experience qualifies for either your airframe, powerplant or both. AIM does not offer individual programs so you have to do the whole curriculum. Also, the way AIM certifies your enrollment for the GI bill you most times won't get your housing allowance until the 10th-15th of the month.
So prepare to make sacrifices. Embry-Riddle offers that option and has the yellow ribbon program. If you take a tour, you will go there.Period. I did not refer to the FAR manual, instead I put my good faith into the Veterans at the school. They sat me down, talked how they want to help fellow veterans out. They earned my trust and I enrolled. I found out that I qualified to take my FAA tests without AIM. They lied, simple as that. Because of their twisted ethics, I lost 6 months of my GI Bill.
To sum up, AIM does not offer any type of degree. They offer a certificate called an 8610-2. This is the certificate to take the FAA tests. Most other schools offer an AS degree in Aviation Maintenance Science. This school is minor leagues, there are cheaper ways to become an airplane mechanic. Look up a state funded school, there are many community colleges that have better curriculum.
Avoid this school, don't fall for the PowerPoint slideshow they pitch. They claim 100% job placement, this may be true. McDonald's counts right? They jobs are often times the jobs Embry Riddle graduates don't want.
The most important things to consider before committing to this school: Can you afford $35k for a non degree seeking school? Why would you spend $35k on a school that is FAR from employers first choice to look for graduates?
This review was written by a former student. Best of luck on your future endeavors. Your best bet is to continue shopping for schools. I only named about 30% of the things that make AIM a ripoff. If you go there, you deserve to find out the other 70% the hard way.