LeTourneau University aviation students placed first, second and third individually and won first place for the school when they recently competed at the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association competition in Fort Worth.
PAMA is the premier aviation maintenance organization for aviation maintenance technicians which fosters continuous improvement in aviation safety.
LETU aeronautical science majors took the top three spots as senior Steve Routh of Port Alsworth, Alaska, won first place. Senior Asher Sherburne of from Yucaipa California won second place. Sophomore Patrick Harney of Lowville, N.Y., won third place. Rounding out the team were senior aircraft systems major Jason Hewes of Tyler, Texas, and junior aeronautical science major Tommy Regier of Fairview, Okla. Faculty sponsors were Andy Farrell and Becky Teerink. The students competed against several other aviation maintenance technology schools in Texas and Oklahoma.
“We are so very proud of our students and the excellence they exhibited at the PAMA competition,” said Fred Ritchey, dean of the LETU School of Aeronautical Science.
During the competition that required intense concentration, the students were required to complete maintenance tasks similar to those they would encounter in their careers as Airframe and Powerplant (A&P) mechanics.
The students were graded on safety wiring, torqueing, riveting, and precision measurement. They rotated to a dozen different stations with only 15 minutes per station and were graded by judges who were from the aviation industry or aviation education. Individual scores were based on the final product, but also on safety and tool management, which meant organizing their tools and discarding debris.
This is the second year LETU has competed in PAMA competition, placing in second place last year by only a few points of 3,000 total.
“We strive for excellence in everything we do, and while it thrills me to see our students perform well in the competition, I have even greater joy in seeing them represent LeTourneau University and our God in such a positive manner before, during and after the competition,” said Sean Fortier, associate dean.
“I appreciate the faculty sponsors and these students for taking time out of their incredibly busy schedules to represent LETU at this competition,” Fortier said. “They are individuals that all of LeTourneau can take pride in because of their accomplishments during this competition.”