Efforts are on stream to upgrade the island’s Civil Aviation Training Centre.
Word of this has come from Director of Civil Aviation, Anthony Archer, who says steps are also in train to have that institution registered with the Barbados Accreditation Council.
While in the past the organisation primarily provided training for Barbadians, Mr. Archer said they had embarked on a three-phased business plan which was aimed at expanding the scope of its curriculum, as well as upgrading the physical plant, in an effort to further extend its services beyond our shores.
“The aim of the business plan is to develop a self-sufficient training institution that could efficiently service not only Barbados, but the whole region and even further afield,” Mr. Archer underscored.
In addition to instituting a name-change aimed at re-branding the training centre, the organisation also appointed two course developers which, the Civil Aviation head explained, was a prerequisite for maintaining TRAIN AIR accreditation.
The Barbados-based centre is the only one in the English-speaking Eastern Caribbean which meets the international requirements for this accreditation. TRAIN AIR, the training arm of International Civil Aviation Organisation (CAIO), is the umbrella body which oversees worldwide civil aviation in terms of regulatory oversight.
The institution is also a qualified TRAIN AIR centre and member of the TRAIN AIR division, having met the requirements of developing a course in real-time, and having it validated by CAIO. The facilities are also currently used to conduct CAIO training.
The second phase of the restructuring will be focused on infrastructural enhancement, namely the construction of more classrooms, and the acquisition of additional resources including vehicles and ancillary staff, all in the effort to facilitate expanded training to both Government trainees and others.
Mr. Archer, who explained that their vision was to have the capacity where persons “would be able to walk off the street and into the training facility,” noted that at present, intake was dependent on the local training needs.
“It we have a heavy training requirement for Barbados, with the present situation, then we cannot accommodate other persons,” he explained. He noted that the third phase of the upgrade would entail a careful review of exactly where they wanted to take the programme, with a view to expanding it.
Approximately 21 persons are currently in training at the institution, and this includes approximately five recruits from the region.