Letters to the editor of April 30, 2022

I am saddened to learn of the planned future closure of Midland College’s Aircraft Maintenance Program. I graduated from the program in May 2019 and my A&P license has been the key to an exciting second career. I hope this decision will be reconsidered and reversed to allow the program to continue. My first career took me to West Texas in 1998, leaving Houston. I was a certified orthodontist; my staff and I had the privilege of providing many patients with beautiful smiles for 21 years, until my retirement in 2019.

My interest in aviation began when I got my private pilot’s license while in the military. When my wife and I moved to Midland, we bought a house very close to Midland Airpark. I started working on my instrument rating and completed this upgrade in 2001. My IFR instructor invited me to join him in a partnership to purchase a Cessna 182 RG. Over the next 15 years, my love for flying really grew and I started wanting to know more about our aircraft. I wanted to become an A&P mechanic. This opportunity came true for me when I enrolled in the program in August 2017.

Two years later, I completed the program and received my A&P license as well as an Associate of Applied Science degree. I retired from orthodontics the same month I graduated from Midland College’s Aircraft Maintenance Program. There aren’t many people my age going back to college full time, but I’m so grateful that I chose this path and was able to complete the A&P program while living at home.

Instead of closing the aircraft maintenance program at Midland International Airport, I would recommend that Midland College and the City of Midland pursue companies like Beechcraft, Mooney, Cessna, Lear, Lycoming, or Continental to bring in an aircraft manufacturing component in the Permian Basin.

David S. Turner, DDS, MS

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