Construction is expected to begin on the Aviation Institute of Trinidad and Tobago in the next three months.
Minister of Science, Technology and Tertiary Education Fazal Karim made the announcement yesterday, adding that Cabinet on Thursday approved 20 acres of State land to be used for the school.
The country’s first Avionics Engineering Trainee programme was launched in April last year.
Karim was speaking during the tenth anniversary celebrations of the University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT).
The celebrations were held at UTT’s campus in Point Lisas. Attendees included President Anthony Carmona and State representatives from other countries.
Karim told reporters the land was located near the Camden Air Strip in Couva.
He said: “We will soon be surveying the parcel of land and construction will begin within a period of three months time. We already have a design in place.”
Financing will be given through the Public Sector Investment Programme (PSIP) and the cost was not yet determined because plans were still being put in place, he said.
UTT will be responsible for the construction of the institute which will fall under its purview.
The institute will be established through partnerships with Caribbean Airlines Limited (CAL), Metal Industries Limited (MIC), National Helicopter Services Limited (NHSL), the Trinidad and Tobago Civil Aviation Authority (TTCAA) and the Air Guard.
Karim said the facility will be able to hold a maximum of 100 students at a time and will have a hangar, classrooms and workshops.
It should be ready for opening by the end of the year, the minister said.
UTT’s president, Prof Dyer Narinesingh, said the private sector partnership was integral for the institution since this country was a main gateway to Africa, Asia and the Americas.
He said: “ For this to be sustainable, one of the essential ingredients is that we have to provide the human resource with the appropriate skill sets. —SW