CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – The Mahoning Count Career and Technical Center’s Aviation Maintenance Program got a new plane last week and Board President Michael Stanko played a big role in getting it there.
On Thursday, the plane found its new home at MCCTC. Now, it will be used to teach the future of aviation maintenance.
The plane landed on the runway at MCCTC. It approached from the north and landed to the south.
“It’s hig-performance. It has the v-tail configuration, which is different from a lot of the standard configurations and it’s got the latest GPS equipment in it and it also has an autopilot, so this way our students can see the interfacing between GPS, autopilot and so on and so forth,” Stanko said.
The plane is a Beechcraft Bonanza — one of the longest running planes in production.
Stanko helped fly it to MCCTC after helping get it purchased from his friend Dave Williams, who grew up in Youngstown and worked for Stanko. He now runs a charter company.
“To see the airplane come back, there’s a lot of local connections. My name goes back in the logbooks in the thing clear into the early 1980s. Personally, I like the airplane because this is the Bonanza that I learned to fly Bonanzas in,” Stanko said.
Now, students get to learn the ins and outs of the plane and take that knowledge with them into their careers.
“It’s very important to have live aircraft on our facility for our aircraft that actually fly and many of them fly, but we’ve been taking them apart and putting them back together for years, so it’s really neat that we were able to receive this airplace,” said John Zehentbauer, MCCTC superintendent.
Students haven’t been able to dive into planes yet, but some got to watch it land.
“I actually missed it because I had practice, but I know a few guys sent me a video and it was pretty cool. They did, like, a low pass like high-speed pass and then they came in and landed, so it was pretty cool,” said Adam Wise, a senior.
The purchase of the plane was timely because enrollment is on the rise for the program and gives students another plane to work on that they will see in the field during their careers.