First In Flight

2012

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FIRST IN FLIGHT the state's proceeds from a 1998 settle- ment between tobacco companies and 48 states. Some universities have tailored their FXUULFXOXP WR ÀW WKH LQGXVWULHV· QHHGV Elizabeth City State University has North Carolina's only degree in aviation science. UNC Chapel Hill's Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise is home to the Center for Air Commerce, which helps airports and economic and governmental agencies attract aviation businesses. The College of The Albemarle's aviation-mainte- nance-technology department offers courses in aviation sheet-metal composites and hydrau- lics. Local economic-development efforts, such as the regional aviation- and aerospace- industry expansion initiatives of the Charlotte Regional Partnership and Piedmont Triad Partnership, are equally important. As a result, more and more aviation and Elizabeth City Pasquotank Regional Airport shares its runway with the Coast Guard. aerospace companies are moving to North Carolina. Goodrich's repair and overhaul campus for the Americas, next to Monroe Regional Airport, employs 300 and provides services for components found in commer- cial, regional, business and military aircraft. Hartford, Conn.-based United Technologies Corp. announced in September it is purchas- ing Goodrich, combining its operations with its Hamilton Sundstrand aviation-equipment division, which will be based in Charlotte. The long-term impact on Charlotte and Monroe is uncertain. The Charlotte region has a number of industry-leading companies. Turbomeca Manufacturing Inc., a French-owned aerospace company, operates a factory in Monroe. Pittsburgh-based ATI Allvac Inc. opened a factory there in 2007 that manufac- tures titanium- and nickel-based alloys for the military and aerospace companies. "Thousands of military air crews and their families are home based in North Carolina," says Bill Greuling, business- development manager of North Carolina Military Business Center. "Many thou- sands more aviation-support personnel live here to provide support for all these aviation assets. All this activity results in billions of dollars a year being spent by the U.S. military right here in North Carolina." While large companies receive the lion's share of state and local incentives, B USI N E SS N C ALBEMARLE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION

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