- Associated Press - Sunday, May 7, 2017

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - A new Airbus Aviation Center will be built in Alabama to inspire those wanting to pursue a career in the state’s aerospace cluster.

The project will cost $6.5 million to build the center in Mobile and managed by Airbus Americus Inc, Al.com (https://bit.ly/2p8QaNx) reported. The education center will feature classrooms, workshops and “innovation rooms,” along with flight-themed exhibits and education programming.

Airbus strongly supports the establishment of this education center, a facility that will be of great benefit both to the region and to the aerospace industry,” said Allan McArtor, chairman of Airbus Americas, in the release from the governor’s office. “It will provide Gulf Coast residents, students and visitors a place to learn about the rich history and bright future of aerospace in Mobile, to see themselves as a part of this industry, and to learn more about the ways in which the Mobile Bay area, the state of Alabama and the entire Gulf Coast are benefitting from the aerospace hub at the Brookley Aeroplex at Mobile.”

Gov. Kay Ivey’s office is providing $5 million for the project. Airbus is contributing $1.5 million “from AIDT reimbursements for job training.”

“Alabama’s aviation and aerospace industries are poised to drive economic growth in the state over the next 20 years, and it’s important that we prepare for this expansion with game-changing workforce development initiatives,” Gov. Ivey said.

The education center will be built near the Airbus Final Assembly Line at Brookley.

“With its focus on STEM programming and educational activities, the Aviation Education Center will spark the imagination of young Alabamians and inspire many of them to pursue a career in the fast-growing aviation industry,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce. “We’ve set a goal of transforming workforce development in Alabama, and the Aviation Education Center will play an important role in our strategic efforts by showcasing the great opportunities available to young people in aviation.”

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