Boeing deal could provide jobs for local students

The announcement that Horry County Council would look to bring a new Boeing plant to the area has one local school excited about the possibilities.

"I think its an excellent opportunity for the upcoming graduates and for those that have already graduated the school, obviously theres not a lot of aviation jobs in Myrtle Beach at this time," said Peg Jackson, Director of the Pittsburgh Institute of Aeronautics Myrtle Beach Campus.

The institute has been on the Grand Strand since 2011, offering students the skills they need to test for the FAA's Airframe and Powerplant License. With the certification, aviation mechanics can work on anything that flies, including Boeing's new 777X passenger plane.

Leaders in Horry County are hoping Boeing will choose to build the new planes near the Myrtle Beach International Technology & Aerospace Park (ITAP) in Market Common.

Jacob Thomas is just under two months from graduating, and says going to work for Boeing would be a dream job. "Its like going to work for Donald Trump, people know, they hear the name, and they may not know much about them, but they know the name, and they can associate you with that," he said.

Jackson said one of the reasons the PIA opened in Myrtle Beach was because of the growing aviation business. She said the institute wanted to be able to provide the workforce for whenever big companies moved in. "Its always a good thing when you have local jobs available for the graduates, especially if they're from this area," she added.

Thomas is from North Carolina and says he feels like Myrtle Beach has the potential to become an aviation hub. "I have a feeling that especially with such a large runway and large facilities that have been left here from the Air Force, that it has the potential to have aviation booming again."