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Embry-Riddle Now Offering Free Online Class, Aviation 101

For those who dream of becoming pilots, strive for jobs in aviation or are curious about the marvels of modern flight, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is now offering Aviation 101, a free online class developed by the world’s leading aviation educators.

Meant primarily for high school and middle school students but open to all ages, Aviation 101 (available for signup at is composed of 12 high-definition video lessons that will give students an introduction to the industry. Course topics include aircraft systems, aerodynamics, flight instruments, airports, airspace, air traffic control, aeromedical factors, aviation weather, performance, navigation and more.

“Aviation 101 is a great example of what Embry-Riddle can offer to students who are interested in pursuing a career in aviation,” said Ken Byrnes, flight department chair at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus. “It is professionally delivered, high-quality education that ensures that each student becomes a knowledgeable, safety-conscious aviator.”

Students who complete Aviation 101 could be eligible for one hour of course credit at Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach, Fla., or Prescott, Ariz., campus.

For more information, contact Flight Media Coordinator Bob Thomas at


AAAE Awards Over $156,000 In Scholarships To 114 Students For 2014-2015 Academic Year

The American Association of Airport Executives announced this week that it will award more than $156,000 in scholarships to 114 students for the 2014-2015 academic year. Since 1989, the AAAE Foundation has provided more than $3.5 million in scholarships to nearly 2,200 students, making the organization one of the largest supporters of higher education assistance in all of the aviation industry.

"AAAE and the individuals who generously contribute to the Foundation scholarship fund take great pride in supporting deserving students as they work to achieve their educational goals," AAAE President and CEO Todd Hauptli said. "These impressive facts and figures on the dollars awarded and scholarships earned are more than just mere numbers on a page; they represent meaningful contributions to the lives of thousands of students and their families and an investment in the future of our industry and the nation. They also illustrate AAAE's ongoing commitment to education and professional development."

AAAE offers four scholarships through the AAAE Foundation to full-time undergraduate or graduate students who are attending accredited colleges or universities. Eligible students include Accredited Airport Executive members of AAAE and their spouses or children; students sponsored by Accredited Airport Executive members of AAAE; students enrolled in aviation programs with a junior class standing or higher and a minimum GPA of 3.0; and Native American college or university students enrolled in an aviation program with a junior class standing or higher and a minimum GPA of 3.0. A list of the specific scholarships and eligibility requirements is available online.

To make a contribution to the AAAE Foundation, visit the Foundation website or contact Cindy Gunderson, Staff Vice President of Membership/Accreditation & Certification Programs at or (703) 575-2479.



Four students, a teacher, and two advisors from Sunrise Mountain High School in Las Vegas, Nevada—which won the second General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA)/Build A Plane Aviation Design Challenge—began building a Glasair Sportsman airplane last week at Glasair Aviation in Arlington, Washington. The school, which was announced as the winner of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) competition last month, will assemble the aircraft over the next two weeks.

Staff from Glasair and GAMA will oversee construction of the Sportsman, a metal and composite aircraft that seats four adults. The plane, which is sold as a kit, can be assembled with assistance in two weeks through Glasair’s well-known “Two Weeks to Taxi” program.

“We could not be more excited about this year’s winners,” GAMA President and CEO Pete Bunce said. “The students worked hard after school and on weekends on their entry, and the principal chose to buy a more capable computer to allow the competition software to work. A note to GAMA from Principal Grant Hanevold said it all: ‘It was one of my fondest moments as a school principal. Thanks for providing this opportunity for my students, and for the generosity of your board. This competition, and ultimate victory, will be life-changing for my kids. I can’t thank you and the board enough for what you do, and for the positive impact you are making in the life of a kid.’”
Bunce added, “This story is exactly why GAMA and Build A Plane started this competition and why we are so passionate about it.”

GAMA member companies are sponsoring the team’s travel, lodging, meals, and visits to local aviation sites of interest, including the nearby Boeing facility in Everett, WA, and the Museum of Flight. A complete list of sponsors is below. Glasair is also contributing two weeks of staff time to support the build.

“The build last summer was a wonderful opportunity for our staff to share the joy and craftsmanship of building an airplane with the students and their teachers,” Glasair President Nigel Mott said. “Our team has been looking forward to welcoming these students for months, and we can’t wait to see what they will learn and accomplish in the next two weeks.”

The competition attracted 79 entries in 33 states plus Washington, DC—nearly triple the number of applicants in 2013. Schools used “Fly to Learn” curricula and training, including software powered by X-Plane, to design and fly their own virtual airplanes. Each school modified a Glasair Sportsman airplane to fly from one airport to another, and was scored on how much payload the plane carried, how much fuel was used, and the time the flight took. Judges from GAMA’s engineering team selected the winning school, taking into consideration the design features based on what the students applied from the curriculum, as it relates to aerospace engineering principles.



Tonight children will dream big after taking a journey across the Atlantic with one ambitious little mouse. They’ll learn about aviation, innovation, history and perseverance.

New to bookshelves this spring, Lindbergh: The Tale of a Flying Mouse is a suspenseful yet inspiring story of a little mouse who conquered a big challenge. An avid reader, this mouse learned about and then longed to find the distant land called, America. In order to do so he had to survive mousetraps, cats, owls, humans and best of all… gravity.

An aviation enthusiast and professional illustrator, author Torben Kuhlmann’s first picture book is set in early 20th Century Germany when people were seeking a better life in the “New World.”  The stunning artwork immerses the reader in this often forgotten foreign time and the illustrations are responsible for telling some of the most poignant parts of the story.

“One of the main goals behind the conception of Lindbergh was the creation of a convincing part of world history. Yet, I presented it through the eyes of a mouse,” said Kuhlmann. “Every detail is meant to lure you into Lindbergh’s world—with hints to real events and people—and by the end you may think to yourself: “It could have happened this way!””

Since early childhood, Kuhlmann (shown at left) has been fascinated by steam engines, old ocean liners, visionary inventors like Thomas Edison and Leonardo DaVinci, and— most importantly—by the early aviation pioneers. When he was growing up, strange contraptions made out of junk, found objects, and other odds and ends “decorated” the backyard of his parent’s German home. Of course, the contraptions couldn’t fly or actually function in any way, but his childish imagination took over. Some of this playfulness never vanished and his imagination was later fueled by great books and films. Today the protagonist in Lindbergh seems to have a similar demeanor.

Lindbergh is a story I wish I read when I was young,” adds Kuhlmann. “Picture books at the time did not deliver a real adventurous thrill. So, I designed Lindbergh to evoke a sense of childlike adventure with a serious undertone. There is detail to discover in every picture and something for everyone on each page.”


Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University – Worldwide to offer Master of Science in Unmanned Systems starting this summer

“Interest in the unmanned systems industry is growing at an incredible rate,” said Brent Terwilliger, program chair and assistant professor of aeronautics. “This work is complex, and organizations will be looking for employees with specialized education and training in the years to come. The Master of Science in Unmanned Systems will challenge students to seek innovative solutions to issues in this developing field.”

Beginning in August, unmanned systems coursework will examine the application, development, management and policies of unmanned systems and address issues including regulation; systems design; policy and ethics; education and training; and human performance and machine interaction.

The degree has concentrations in the following areas: unmanned aerospace system (UAS); aeronautics and design; human factors; space systems; safety/emergency response; operations; education; aviation/aerospace management; and aviation/aerospace research.

Embry-Riddle Worldwide also offers a minor in unmanned aerial systems as part of a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics and a specialization in unmanned aerospace systems in the Master of Aeronautical Science. Two-day, UAS short courses are being offered throughout the country and abroad through Embry-Riddle Worldwide’s Office of Professional Education.

For more information on the Master of Science in Unmanned Systems, visit


Nevada High School Named Winner of 2nd GAMA/Build A Plane STEM Competition

The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) and Build A Plane announced  that the Formula X team from Sunrise Mountain High School in Las Vegas, Nevada, is the winner of the second Aviation Design Challenge to promote Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) skills among U.S. high school students. Four students, a teacher, and a chaperone from the high school will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Glasair Aviation in Arlington, Washington, to build a real Glasair Sportsman airplane fromJune 16-28, 2014.

This year’s competition attracted 79 entries from schools in 33 states plus Washington, DC—nearly triple the number of entries in 2013. As part of the contest, students used “Fly to Learn” curricula and training to learn the fundamentals of aerospace engineering and flight, and used software powered by X-Plane to apply what they learned by designing and flying their own virtual airplane. Each school modified a Glasair Sportsman airplane to fly from one airport to another, and was scored on how much payload the plane carried, how much fuel was used, and the time the flight took. Judges from GAMA’s engineering team selected the winning school, taking into consideration the design features based on what the students applied from the curriculum, as it relates to aerospace engineering principles.

The students also submitted a one-page essay on how the competition enhanced their knowledge of STEM. In its essay, Sunrise Mountain High School wrote, “We will always remember this amazing experience and some of us are already thinking about becoming pilots and engineers.”


SIU Aviation Program Earns Key FAA Certificate

Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s aviation flight and aviation management programs recently received Federal Aviation Administration certification that reduces the required flight time for graduates interested in becoming airline pilots.

Based on SIU’s curriculum and training requirements, the FAA on March 5 lowered the number of flight hours that SIU aviation students need to qualify for a restricted air transport pilot certificate, or R-ATP. The reduction is from 1,500 to 1,250 flight hours for aviation flight students and to 1,000 flight hours for students in the combined aviation flight and aviation management programs. The result is a significant savings in both time and money for graduates headed to a flight career with an airline.

SIU is among a group of about 40 universities in the nation to receive the FAA certification, David A. NewMyer, department chair, said. Until last year, an airline could hire a co-pilot or first officer with as few as 250 flight hours. The FAA’s revision to 1,500 flight hours was significant for future pilots wanting to fly for the airlines, NewMyer said. The certificate is required for individuals wanting to fly as co-pilots for major air carriers like United, Southwest, American and Delta, along with regional airlines such as American Eagle, SkyWest, ExpressJet, Republic and TranStates.
“This certification gives our students added flexibility as they pursue their careers after graduation and is a strong endorsement of the training provided by the faculty and staff in our aviation program,” Chancellor Rita Cheng said.


A New Day for Female Aviators at EAA AirVenture 2014

The annual WomenVenture gathering, designed to encourage and inspire women in aviation and those who want to fly, will welcome hundreds of female aviators on Wednesday, July 30, during the annual EAA® AirVenture® OshkoshTM fly-in convention. EAA AirVenture 2014 will be held July 28-August 3 at Wittman Regional Airport in Oshkosh, Wis.

Co-sponsored by Women in Aviation International and The Ninety-Nines, two groups that encourage women’s aviation participation, WomenVenture moves to a midweek celebration in order to welcome more females currently involved in aviation or who want to be involved in the flying community.

All women involved in the aviation community are invited to be part of the traditional group photo on AirVenture’s main showcase ramp at 11 a.m., followed by the “WomenVenture Power Lunch” at Theater in the Woods at 11:30. Pre-registration for the lunch is required.



The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association’s (AOPA) AV8RS youth membership program has awarded four scholarships totaling $20,000 to teens who are pursuing flight training in high school and college.

This year’s scholarship program was funded through the AOPA Foundation, a non-profit organization, and made possible through generous donations from AOPA Insurance Services and Sporty’s Pilot Shop.

The winners are Alexander Brown, 15, of Boyds, Md., Abigail Jarve, 17, of Seatac, Wash., Carl Eefsting, 17, of Allendale, Mich., and Matthew Groh, 18, of Lafayette, Ind.

“We are proud to name these four exceptional young AV8RS as the recipients of our 2014 AV8RS program scholarships,” said Mark Baker, AOPA president and CEO. “When you look at what these young people have done already – in aviation, in school and in their communities – it’s clear that they are well on their way to successful lives in and out of the cockpit. It gives us great pleasure to help them on their way.”

Several applicants noted that the scholarship will help offset the expense of flight training, which can come in addition to college tuition.

Recipient Carl Eefsting hopes to pursue a missionary flying career. Two awardees, Matthew Groh –  a freshman at Purdue University – and Abigail Jarve, who will attend the University of North Dakota, want to put their scholarships toward flight training for airline careers.

Alexander Brown will turn 16 in June and has been preparing to solo. He applied for the scholarship to help pay for a private pilot’s certificate as a first step toward a flying career.

“I am a young man who believes in balancing your life through the four ‘As’ – Academics, Athletics, Arts and AVIATION,” Brown wrote in his scholarship application.

Jarve stated, “My dream is to become a pilot, and I am not giving up until I am one.”

“I don’t want to be just any pilot,” Groh wrote. “I want to be a safe, prepared, focused and efficient pilot who knows his abilities and limitations.”

Eefsting described his hope to become a missionary pilot who will “fly to isolated villages in third-world countries, transporting pastors, Bible teachers and missionaries, and flying medical emergencies.”

AV8RS is AOPA’s program to introduce teens aged 13 to 18 to the world of aviation and flight. Membership in AV8RS is free and includes a digital subscription to Flight Training magazine; access to member-only content on and for research and interesting stories; opportunities to connect with other AOPA AV8RS across the country through dedicated online social communities including Facebook, Twitter, tumblr, and YouTube; informative content at; a special e-newsletter with stories about young pilots; scholarship opportunities and more.



The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) today announced the availability of two prestigious scholarships awarded annually to students who have excelled in or are pursuing aviation studies.

The Edward W. Stimpson “Aviation Excellence Award” is given to a graduating high school senior who has been accepted to and will be enrolled in an aviation degree core program at his or her chosen university or college. The award includes a $2,000 cash prize and is named after Stimpson, who was a founder of GAMA and served as its President from 1970 to 1990 and from 1992 to 1996. Applicants are judged on the basis of academic skills, extracurricular activities, and an essay on what aviation means to the student and how he or she plans to pursue a career in aviation.

The Dr. Harold S. Wood Award for Excellence is given annually to a college student who is a flight team member at a National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) member school. The award comes with a $2,000 cash prize and an engraved propeller trophy, and is named after Wood, founder and past executive director of NIFA. Students are judged on the basis of academic skills, both aviation-related and non-aviation-related extracurricular activities, and an essay about their future aviation plans.

Both applications are due April 18, 2014, and can be found on GAMA’s Web site  at