(MOBILE, Ala) -- On a college campus this time of year, preparation is the blend of studying and sound. At least if you're a mechanical engineering major like David Avery.
Finals are closing in, and with them is the prospect of a fruitful career.
"There's a big difference in pay for engineers without experience and ones with experience," Avery, a junior at the University of South Alabama, said.
Avery has that experience already and is now working on a second degree. He spoke to Local 15 news during a study break inside Shelby Hall Thursday night, knowing experience like his is highly attractive to engineering giant Safran.
"This region has a strong future in aerospace; it has a strong workforce and very up to date skills," Safran CEO Bruno Bernard said to reporters after it was announced his company would be the first supplier for Airbus in Mobile.
Inside the Mobile Convention Center, the French-born CEO seemed to be making a smooth transition to the south.
"Bonjour, y'all," he said to an roar of laughter.
Bernard said he is eager to make his company the Port city's newest economic citizen; significant for a company that plans to start its first 50 engineer in Mobile at $70,000.
"Our young people finish high school and leave and go away to school and when they get ready to come home, there's nothing there for them," Mobile County Commission President Merceria Ludgood said, "I think this is a big lick against that."
It's also a big change in the path for students and engineers like Avery as well as the economic future for a city as a whole.
"It would help people stay local, I think mobile and the Gulf Coast has already been a place people travel to here to work," he said.
Bruno estimated Safran would have it's office at Brookley Aeroplex operational by the end of next March.