The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) lauded the introduction this week of U.S. Senate Bill 3360 – legislation to create a dedicated forum to foster collaboration between all segments of the nation’s aviation and aerospace industries, with a particular focus on workforce development.
The bipartisan measure, introduced Feb. 27 by U.S. Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), would establish the National Center for the Advancement of Aviation (NCAA) where stakeholders could work together to coordinate, promote and support the development of aviation and aerospace within the United States.
“In the more than 100 years since Wilbur and Orville Wright conducted their historic flights at Kitty Hawk, our nation has seen aviation in the United States grow, powered by the individual passions of pilots, aviators and countless others,” Inhofe said in a statement. “The NCAA will advance a collaborative process to promote aviation in the United States and assist in the development of the next generation of aviation and aerospace workers.”
“As a pilot, I know that investing in aviation-focused education and workforce development programs helps attract and retain the best talent and keeps our nation at the forefront of global aviation innovation,” Duckworth said in a statement, adding the measure supports, “the development of next-generation aviators and foster collaboration in the aviation and aerospace industries to help meet the demands and challenges of tomorrow.”
NBAA joined with more than 130 aviation trade and advocacy groups, commercial airlines, fractional and charter operators, pilots unions, state and airport representatives and other aviation stakeholders, representing hundreds of thousands of individuals, companies, schools and other entities involved in all segments of aviation and aerospace, in a letter expressing their support for the measure. Read the letter to lawmakers. (PDF)
“Sens. Inhofe and Duckworth are proven aviation champions, and their support for this important bill underscores their commitment to ensuring the industry’s future is bright,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “We are proud to support this legislation and look forward to doing all we can to ensure its passage.”
Among the potential roles for the NCAA cited by those groups would be to provide STEM-focused resources to high school and collegiate curriculum developers; serve as a collaborative forum to leverage and share expertise amongst all industry sectors; function as a central repository for economic and safety data research and analysis; and support symposiums and conferences to facilitate cross-disciplinary collaboration across aviation and aerospace communities.