SIU Aviation Department receives fund for VR Training

Training grant benefits SIU Aviation

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. (KFVS) - Before Southern Illinois University students start hands-on training at Southern Illinois airport in Murphysboro, they will learn in a virtual world.

A more than one-million-dollar grant that is awarded from Man-Tra-Con will help enhance their training. SIU Aviation professor Karen Johnson is excited for the future.

“The grant is going to be used to help develop some virtual reality modules that will be used in the aviation maintenance technician training program," he said.

This training will not replace what they are doing in the actual hangars.

“It’s just going to supplement it, kind of prefect it, so they are ready go when they get into the live setting," Johnson said.

CEO of Man-Tra-Con Kathy Lively said it’s a win, win to partner with Southern Illinois University.

“Our whole passion is about workforce development so if there’s a need. It’s not just about placing people, it’s about how do we develop a system or re-develop a system to better serve and we’re very excited.”

The training will help in many ways.

“More quickly train, more safely train and increase the enrollment of the program for SIU and also to utilize some work force funds to help offset cost for the employers who are coming here so people can earn while they are learning," Lively said.

The grant came from Regional Leaders part of the Delta Regional Authority awarded to Man-Tra-Con to fund towards job in the aviation field. Johnson said this will help bring in future students

“If we can build the pipeline up it will definitely translate to more jobs in the industry," he said.

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