I enrolled at MTACC in August of 1996 with the hope of bettering myself and my life.
At my enrollment interview with the school's dean, Dr. David Neal, I was told that careers in aviation were high paying and always in demand.
My first instructor was Mr. Mike Moreland. Mr. Moreland had been with MTACC since the program had opened back in 1988. He was a former instructor at Tulsa Technology Center but he had never worked in the aviation field.
Mr. Moreland knows the material in a most comprehensive and detailed manner. I have no doubts he could teach the material if he wanted to. There is the point.
Mr. Moreland is a giant among his students and peers only because he cuts them off at the knees to make himself look larger. The failure rate of his classes are 70% or higher and he seems to become angry if more pass his tests than he wants. None of his tests were easy even if the topic was elementary.
If the test could not be made hard alone by the subject material he would enter extra material not covered in either the books or the lectures. If the material is hard and the time given to the subject to long in his opinion classroom time will consist mostly of pushing around airplanes on the tarmac out back or he will conveniently take a few days off; leaving his class with
a hopless unprepared instructor.
He does not like questions. In the labs he is almost nonexistent but the tasks given are fairly easy. Mr. Moreland has an ego as large as Texas, is as abrasive as they come, and if challenged in anyway will find time for extra curricular revenge. He is a petty man that has found the job that strokes his ego.
Mr. Crawford, the evening instructor in training. A nice gentleman that was clueless in all respects. The night classes received little or no instruction while he was in training to become an instructor. Mr. Crawford was an engineer by trade, had worked in the field, and had a A+P certification. Mr. Crawford was ritually humiliated by Mr. Moreland while he was learning from him to teach the course materials. He was as angry with
Mr. Moreland's personality as the students. He filled in the day classes when Mr. Moreland decided to take a few days off. I think he had his heart in it but had chosen the wrong place to begin a career as a A+P instructor.
There was another old man that filled in for Herr Dr. Moreland. He was an old helicopter mechanic. He had the mental capacity of Ronald Reagan today. He spent his time breaking things and not doing a thing Moreland told him to. I don't know if this was senility or his way of dealing with Moreland, I mean, Herr Dr.
Mr. Clay Pate the second block instructor; Airframe. Very knowledgeable although he could easily be side tracked in class with stories of the "Vietnam War" or "Eastern Airlines". He was aware of Moreland's flaws and tried to remedy them by covering the material by the book. His classes would test by using the questions that would be asked on the actual A+P exam instead of a handmade monstrosity. Herr Dr., always trying to cause
trouble, would complain to Dr. Neal endlessly about his doing so. Moreland would volunteer Mr. Pate's class to push around airplanes on the tarmac diverting valuable classroom time away from the students.
I had only one problem with Mr Pate's teaching method; don't get me wrong, I thought he was a nice guy and knew his stuff. Failure rates went down considerably in his class. Mr. Pate had a motto, "Perfect makes perfect."
He would assign projects and walk the halls. You would try and ask he a question on how best to do the project assigned and he would shrug his shoulders and walk off. These projects were difficult, some instruction was needed. This angered me to no end. I don't now what his problem was. He would talk of "integrity"; I wish he had a little more of it when it came to the hands on aspect of instructing the course.
I quite after the second block. I was totally fed up, had failed over half of the classes, the next instructor had a reputation worse than Moreland's, and if I had went on I would have had to retake the failed courses with the same rotten instructors. I was not alone; three-fourths of the class I was
in was in the same boat. I do not see how the school graduates even 10% of those than enroll. To make up the time and classes I would have more than doubled my time there.
More than half of the time at MTACC is wasted pushing around airplanes, preparing for the air show they sponsor "Air America" (extra credit is given if you help them run the concession stands), or listening to lectures not related to the classroom material.
This was not the straw that broke the camel's back though.
Toward the middle of the second block employers were brought in to the school by Dr. Neal to talk to students about future employment (if they ever passed, sic!). Dr. Neal was about ready to quit after going though a messy divorce and sat in his office all day drinking "Beefeater" gin. Warning, he is now
dean of a small community college in southern California.
The average package offered to the student was at $6 to $10 and usually involved a move across the country. One student that had just graduated moved to Wichita, KS to work for Cessna. A week and a half later he was laid off with the rest of the plant. I would always ask these employers if they included a refrigerator box to live in after hearing about the low wages and intermittent employment.
I left in the evening to avoid a confrontation. I was extremely angry at having wasted a year on an effort of futility. They would not have liked my explanations for leaving and only wanted to keep me around to suck more money out of me.
I wrote a letter of complaint to the top director of MetroTech School's, Dr Kara G. Wilson. In the letter I explained why I left and the current state of the school in my opinion. I received her reply on school letterhead, handwritten, all in capital letters, "GET A LIFE!". I hoped it had occurred
to her that I had been trying to get a life by enrolling in her school and putting up with her insufferable instructors for a year.
Total wasted expenditure about TEN GRAND and a year of my life.
I wrote letters to my State Representative, the Governor, The Oklahoma Board of Public Vocational Schools. I included copies of both my letter and her's.
They all shrugged their shoulders collectively. If OBPVS had done an investigation they would have surely found enough evidence to pull their accreditation on finding the low amount of students graduating from the program. I suspect payola is involved as a few minor administrators have had their personal aircraft repaired at the school by the instructors.
Oklahoma's tax dollars at work!
I wrote the Federal Aviation Administration to find out those exact numbers but met a bureaucratic wall. No one seemed to know what kind of statistics I wanted from them.
Shortly after starting my own personal investigation into the way MetroTech does business, asking a lot of biting questions, I received a call from the Oklahoma City Police Department asking me to stop "harassing" Dr. Wilson.
MetroTech employs a good number of OKCPD as security on all of their campuses. I can well imagine one of them being asked to intimidate me into silence. I must be nice to have your own "Goon Squad" on the payroll.
MetroTech Aviation Career Center continues on their merry way. I have a lifetime ban from the school for asking questions they didn't like and for complaining about the way they treat their clients.
Before you enroll at MetroTech or consider a career in aviation consider what I have said a warning![email protected]
METRO TECH REBUTTAL - ..then, VICTIM RESPONDS BACK
Subj: Rebuttal to Report Metro Tech's Aviation Career Center
Date: 6/2/00 9:16:43 AM US Mountain Standard Time
From: [email protected]
To: [email protected]
The individual that expressed their displeasure with Metro Tech's Aviation Career Center has been at odds with Metro Tech for more than three years.
The source of discontent is that the individual had a personality conflict with two of the instructors that were and are on staff currently. According to memos and letters written to the site director at the time the only acceptable recourse was to fire the two instructors involved. When the Site Director would not accommodate the person stating the complaint, the Site
Director was then included in list of individuals that should be fired. This was further expanded to include all instructors on staff including those who had no contact with the individual.
The two instructors cited by the complainant have repeatedly been
complimented by their students for devotion to the profession and a genuine interest in the individual students. One of the instructors routinely has a class meet at his house during the weekend for cook outs and just "hanging out". The other instructor would remain three or four hours after class to
assist students in completing work projects or to provide individualized instruction.
The individual did take 30 classes of the Aviation Maintenance Technician program. The individual was absent for approximately 50 hours of instruction and must retake four courses. Fourteen other classes are incomplete for either missed time or incomplete work. It is probable that the inability to complete the required course work is what prompted the initial and
continuing displeasure by this person.
On several occasions the person lodging the complaint was offered an opportunity to express concerns and disagreements. At each juncture what was requested from the complainant was ever increasing and unacceptable demands.
Complaints were registered with the State Department of Vo Tech and it was inferred by the individual that legislative representatives were contacted.
The written communication from the individual was increasingly erratic and appeared to be disjointed. Review by District representatives and local law enforcement personnel determined that this individual was a jeopardy to public safety. For that reason the individual is not permitted on Metro Tech campuses. Arrangements were made with another training institution for the
individual to complete their training. As far as can be determined the individual has not availed themselves of the opportunity to complete the training.
Furthering this individual's aggravation was the unsubstantiated claim that the Aviation Industry was paying starting wages at the minimum wage level.
Four years ago when the purported layoff incident occurred, the Aerospace Industry was emerging from a significantly depressed market. Since that time demand for trained aircraft workers has increased and starting salaries are in the range of $10.00 to $12.00 per hour. Recruiters from across the nation are seeking licensed aircraft mechanics. Signing bonuses and moving expenses
are being offered to successful candidates.
Since the individual left the program in August 1997, 69 individuals have completed the AMT program and a majority of them are actively employed in the industry.
The Director and staff of Metro Tech's Aviation Career Center would invite anyone who has an interest in training to be an Aviation Maintenance Technician to visit in person the Aviation Career Center located at Will Rogers World Airport and meet with the staff. Arrangements could be made so a prospective student could ask current and former students about their opinion of the program.
VICTIM RESPONDS BACK TO REBUTTAL
Subj: Consumer's Rebuttal to Metro Tech's
Aviation Career Center Rebuttal
Date: 6/2/00 1:37:59 PM US Mountain Standard Time
To: [email protected]
I believe I covered all points in my first complaint and I did contact my state Representative, state Senator, the Governors Office, Oklahoma Department of Vocational Schools, and a public television program where citizens of this state are allowed to place questions to local government officials.
I work full-time unlike many students. I have to support myself and a family. The school is 5 days a week. Yes, I did miss a number of days while attending the school and had the opportunity to make up those days at the end of the course; in fact I could have made up those days while retaking the courses I had failed. I did as well as those that did not have full-time jobs so a good number of my fellow students could have retaken the subjects with me. I could get permission from some of the students to list their names to corroborate my account but at this time it is rather pointless. They list people who are working in the aviation field as those who enlist in the military after they leave the school. Ask them about those that enter the private sector and the number goes down considerably.
Glad to see they included their close relationship with law enforcement which they hire on their campuses. Everything would have been peachy if I hadn't stopped attending the school and complained about the school. They are only interested in the money.
I complained about the school because my complaints are justified. Yes, I did call for the dismal of some of the instructors to improve the course. I would have been satisfied if they had been given reprimands or notices to improve but I would not take another class with them as they would have been as highly displeased with me as I was with them. They have made no remedies to the situation and see no problem with the large numbers of students failing the amount of courses.
So, three years have passed. They are still wrong. I have a ban from the school. It is kind of hard to retake the courses if you are banned from the school and too much time has passed to pick up where I left off even if they made amends by reforming their course. I am still out time and effort by attending this shoddy excuse for a school.
Ask many students that have attended MetroTech Aviation Career Center; many are working in this community not in the aviation field. The wages in the aviation field are dismal even if you somehow complete this school.
Yes, Mr. Moreland does offer a pizza party when he gets student evaluations on his personal performance in class. Most of the after school time referred to graciously donated to students is usually in meetings with the director. I had no beef with Mr. Pate outside of his not instructing during the hands on aspect of the course.
If I was a great risk to "public safety" would I be using this form and appeals to my representatives in government to address my grievances about this school?
I join MetroTech in an invitation to attend the school if you are up for a very expensive lesson. I will leave that up to you decide if I am correct in my condemnation of this school.