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Best of Both Worlds

Combining a love of aviation and fixing things, Eric Barry found fulfillment maintaining airplanes. 

When Eric Barry was 12 years old, he fell in love with airplanes. 

“After high school, I went to flight school and gained my private pilot's license and an instrument rating,” he says. Marriage and kids came next, and flight school took a back seat as life took over. “I kept running out of money. My last flight instructor had been an airframe & powerplant mechanic, and he told me that training made him a better pilot. I decided that would be a good way to get back into aviation and possibly eventually pursue my goal of being a commercial pilot.”

He enrolled at Fox Valley Tech, and was energized by the hands-on training. “I'm a visual learner, so the amount of time we spent in the hangar really helped me. I can read a book 10 times and still not be comfortable with what I’m supposed to do, but walk me through the process once or twice and I will have it down. That’s one of the things I loved so much about FVTC.” 

Eric graduated from the Airframe & Powerplant Mechanics program in 2020, and promptly got a job at Myers Aviation in Oshkosh as an A&P Mechanic. In 2021, he completed the Aircraft Electronics program.  

“Being part of the miracle of flight is a dream come true,” he says.