Certified Member Program


Becoming a Certified Member (C.M.) is a great way to show employers your dedication to your airport career. The program is open to Affiliate, Associate, Participating, Corporate, Military and Academic Graduate members of AAAE and Affiliate, Associate and Corporate members of IAAE. Certified Member is a useful credential when seeking employment within the airport management profession and for students and corporate members who interact with airport professionals. 

Candidates in the C.M. program obtain the designation by completing only one step - a 180-question, multiple-choice examination. The multiple-choice exam is comprised of information contained in the Body of Knowledge modules, and measures a candidate’s comprehensive knowledge of airport management, regardless of airport size.  There are no time limits for program completion - the C.M. program is self-study, and allows candidates to successfully complete the multiple-choice exam at their own pace.

Requirements to Enroll in the C.M. Program

  1. Membership in AAAE or IAAE
    (Note: student members must first upgrade their membership status to that of Academic Graduate.)
  2. Payment of membership dues and program enrollment fee

C.M. Process
The exam may not be easy, but the process is. To become a C.M.:

  1. Submit an application with your $200 program fee.
  2. Study the provided materials to help you prepare for the exam. You will have the chance to attend optional programs that help you prepare as well, including:
  3. Take the exam. Exams are offered at the AAAE Annual Conference and Academies, at the AAAE headquarters, or can be administered locally with an eligible proctor.

Once you pass the exam, you’ll forever be a C.M., with all the rights and privileges. If you meet the additional criteria for an Accredited Airport Executive (A.A.E.), your exam completion will transfer to your A.A.E. program, should you choose to advance your career further.

CM Program Application
(Adobe PDF File)

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What are the requirements and procedures for joining the Certified Member Program?
The requirements are as follows:

  1. Membership in AAAE
  2. Payment of AAAE membership dues and the C.M. program enrollment fee

Can Academic Members join the Certified Member Program?
Academic members may upgrade their membership to the Academic Graduate level in order to join the C.M. program. Academic and Academic Graduate Membership is available only to full-time students enrolled in an undergraduate program of study.

If you are already an Academic Member, your current dues will be applied toward the new Academic Graduate category. Refer to the examples below for fee information.

Current student members would be required to pay the following fees:

  • Upgrade to Academic Graduate Membership $110 ($150 Academic Graduate membership minus current academic member dues of $40)
  • Certified Member Program Fee: $200.00
  • Total fees due: $310.00

New student members would be required to pay the following fees:

  • Academic Graduate Membership: $150.00
  • Certified Member Program Fee: $200.00
  • Total fees due: $350.00

Although "Academic Graduates" are allowed to join the program, they will not receive, nor be recognized by AAAE as a C.M. until they have successfully passed the AAAE multiple-choice examination, and shown proof of graduation from a four-year institution of higher learning.

When will I be notified about the results of my application? 
Once AAAE processes your application (which could take 3-5 business days), you will receive e-mail notification regarding your acceptance into the program. If for some reason your application cannot be accepted, we will notify you of the reasons by e-mail.

Do I have to work for an airport to join the program?
No, the Certified Member program is open to all current members of AAAE. However, Academic members must upgrade to Academic Graduate status before entering the Program. Academic members may apply for Academic Graduate membership before they graduate; however, they will not receive the C.M. designation until after they have (1) successfully completed the multiple-choice exam and (2) graduated from a four-year institution of higher learning.

How much does the program cost?
Anyone wishing to join the Certified Member program must be an active member of AAAE and pay a one-time fee of $200.00. This fee includes registration, access to electronic study materials, and a one-time examination fee. Candidates who need to retake the exam will be assessed an additional $75 for each retake. Hard copies of the Body of Knowledge modules may be purchased here for $50.

Afterwards, if I want to join the Accreditation Program, is the test transferable?
Yes. Provided that you meet all the criteria for enrollment in the accreditation program, you may transfer your successful completion of the AAAE multiple-choice examination. The tests are identical in both programs. Please visit the Accreditation Program pages for detailed requirements.

Will I be able to use the designation "C.M." after my name after I successfully complete the exam?
You may use the "C.M." designation provided that your membership in AAAE is current, and if AAAE headquarters has a record of your successful completion of the multiple-choice examination. Academic Graduate members must show proof of graduation from a four-year college before utilizing the C.M. designation. If you choose to enroll in the accreditation program later, this designation will be replaced by the A.A.E. designation upon your successful completion of the accreditation process.

Are there any time limits to complete the exam after I register for the program?
No, there are no time limits.

What benefits will I receive as an AAAE Certified Member?
In addition to learning more about the aviation industry and enhancing your career and professional opportunities with a highly respected credential, you will receive from AAAE a Certified Member certificate and lapel pin. You will also receive visibility and recognition as the C.M. designation will appear behind your name in all AAAE correspondence, including meeting rosters and our membership directory.

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