President Rosenberg blogs from China: Why not us?

This is President Rosenberg’s eighth annual blog chronicling the TUC-FIU partnership, the annual China Commencement and our students in China. 

Why Not Us?

Here we go again to another FIU graduation this spring–at our hospitality program in Tianjin, China. And what greets us as we arrive in Beijing but the maiden flight of a new Chinese airliner that could one day take on the likes of Boeing, a significant employer of FIU graduates.

Have you heard of the C-919? Soon, one may be landing at our Miami International Airport, laden with tourists and cargo from what will likely be the lone economic superpower in the world. This is China’s latest bid to become a major player in global aviation. While China is clearly the largest single market for aviation, it has not yet been a major player in aviation manufacturing.

So with the maiden voyage, we may be witnessing the first serious competitor to Boeing since Airbus. While the C-919 is slated to compete with the Airbus A320 and the Boeing 737, it is still untested in the competitive commercial marketplace. So far, there are about 570 orders for the airplane, mostly from China’s domestic airlines.

Still, the C-919’s arrival marks a new stage in China’s long march to global relevance. It stands in contrast to the recent Boeing announcement that the company will open a new 737 MAX simulator in Miami. This facility will train thousands of pilots on the new aircraft. About 3,750 737 MAX planes have already been ordered by nearly 90 companies worldwide.

Maybe one day, as Florida opens even further to the burgeoning Chinese market, Miami will also be a hub for training on the C-919, this new entrant into the global aviation market. Our history is still being written. Why not us?