06/28/2022 09:15 AM

June 28, 2022

LAX Public Relations
(424) 646-5260
Los Angeles World Airports Chief Executive Officer Justin Erbacci (right) welcomed in-person attendees
on the final day of the LAX Aviation Careers Education (ACE) Academy.

(Los Angeles) Over the course of last week, more than 80 middle and high school students took part in Los Angeles International Airport's (LAX) first hybrid LAX Aviation Careers Education (ACE) Academy. The academy offered a four-day virtual program, which concluded with 24 students attending Friday's in-person sessions.


"More than 45,000 people work at LAX in a wide variety of exciting roles that bring our airport to life, and LAX ACE Academy offers opportunities for students to hear some of their stories and ask questions about the many career paths in aviation," said Justin Erbacci, Chief Executive Officer, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA). "I hope that conversations started this week will lead to bright opportunities and rewarding careers for these students, and we thank our partners for their participation and engagement in helping us inspire tomorrow's aviation professionals."

LAX's ACE Academy, now in its 25th year, is a weeklong motivational program designed to provide students with a basic understanding of career opportunities within the aviation, construction and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) industries, as well as general knowledge about LAX. The free program introduces students to a wide variety of careers that support aviation, and many of the academy's speakers come from diverse backgrounds and historically underrepresented communities.

More than 40 presenters shared advice and stories about their career paths as part of the program.

Students interacted with more than 40 presenters representing companies working in air cargo and commercial air travel, science and engineering, and those with local and federal government agencies including LAWA, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Transportation Security Administration and the Los Angeles Fire Department. This year’s program also included a full-day session focused on the future of aviation and emerging technologies, including advanced air mobility, uncrewed aircraft systems, and urban and regional air mobility. 

In addition to students and speakers participating from Los Angeles and cities surrounding LAX and the Antelope Valley, the virtual format allowed attendees from across California to join. One student joined from Michigan and another participated from Guatemala.

Among the local schools represented in the program this year were El Segundo Middle School; El Segundo High School; WISH High School; Lennox Mathematics, Science & Technology Academy; Palms Middle School; Culver City High School; Venice High School; Mira Costa High School and Girls Academic Leadership Academy; and Westchester High School. Many students attended the program from Fulton & Alsbury Academy of Arts and Engineering in Lancaster.

Representatives from United Airlines, Polar/Atlas Air Cargo, the Latino Pilots Association, Hoffman & Pomerantz LLP and the U.S. Marine Corps shared experiences and advice on how to become a pilot.

Students registering for this year's program included 28% who identify as female, 5% who identify as non-binary, 37.7% who identify as Hispanic or Latino, 21.5% who identify as Black or African American, and 25.4% who identify as Asian or Asian American. More than 59% of registrants indicated interest in pursuing STEM careers, and more than 80% indicated plans to pursue college or university degrees.

ACE Academy is facilitated by LAX Community Relations, which works to establish programs and services that address the needs and concerns of surrounding airport communities through strong partnerships with civic groups and community stakeholders. Initiatives include promoting youth programs, aviation education, volunteerism, civic participation and more. To learn more about these programs, visit

About Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
LAX, the fifth-busiest airport in the world in 2021 with 48 million passengers, is in the midst of a $15-billion capital improvement program that will touch on all nine passenger terminals and build new facilities, including an Automated People Mover (APM) train, Consolidated Rent-A-Car (ConRAC) facility and the West Gates at Tom Bradley International Terminal.

In 2019, LAX served nearly 88.1 million passengers and offered an average of 700 daily nonstop flights to 113 destinations in the U.S. and 1,200 weekly nonstop flights to 91 markets in 46 countries on 72 commercial airlines.

LAX generates 620,600 jobs in Southern California, with labor income of $37.3 billion and economic output (business revenues) of more than $126.6 billion, according to an economic study based on 2014 operations. This activity added $6.2 billion to local and state revenues and $8.7 billion in federal tax revenues. The study also reported that LAX's ongoing capital improvement program creates an additional 121,640 annual jobs with labor income of $7.6 billion and economic output of $20.3 billion; $966 million in state and local taxes; and $1.6 billion in federal tax revenues.

LAX is part of a system of two Southern California airports – along with Van Nuys general aviation – that are owned and operated by Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), a proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles that receives no funding from the City's general fund.

LAWA is leading the aviation industry in sustainability practices, with initiatives related to water management, energy (electricity) management, air quality, recycling and natural resources management. In 2019, LAX received Level III ACI Airport Carbon Accreditation from Airports Council International-Europe.

LAWA is also a leader in inclusivity, operating eight programs that provide opportunities for business enterprises including local, small, minority-owned, veteran-owned and disadvantaged firms, and working together with community partners to offer the HireLAX Apprenticeship Readiness Program, which targets local workers to make them ready for rewarding careers in the construction trades, and the Build LAX Academy, designed to prepare small contracting businesses for success when working on projects at LAX.

LAX was named a top-10 U.S. airport by SKYTRAX in 2018, and was honored as the "Most Innovative Airport for Passenger Experience" in 2019 by the American Association of Airport Executives. LAX is the second-most popular airport in the world to appear on Instagram, according to Other recent honors have included selection as the No. 9 Best Airport (Wall Street Journal); No. 7 Best On-Time Performance for a Mega-Hub Airport (OAG); one of "The World's Best Airports for Business Travelers" (GlobeHunters); Public-Private Partnership of the Year (P3 Bulletin); Urth Caffe, Best Airport Coffee Concession of the Year (Global FAB Awards); Innovation of the Year, Consolidated Rent-A-Car Facility (ARTBA); Best Project, United Airlines Terminal 7 and 8 Redevelopment Program (Engineering News Record California); North American Public-Private Partnership Deal of the Year (IJ Global); and Innovative Transportation Solution of the Year, Automated People Mover (WTS LA).

As a covered entity under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the City of Los Angeles does not discriminate on the basis of disability and, upon request, will provide reasonable accommodation to ensure equal access to its programs, services, and activities. Alternative formats in large print, braille, audio, and other forms (if possible) will be provided upon request.

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