The University of North Dakota placed an order with Cessna for 25 Skyhawks, marking a return of the model to the school’s flight program. The first four airplanes were delivered to UND Aerospace, the university’s aviation department, during a ceremony on July 10 at Cessna’s manufacturing plant in Independence, Kansas.
Sean Roberts, an experimental test pilot for both military and civilian projects with more than 18,000 flight hours, started the National Test Pilot School (NTPS) in 1980 after receiving requests from the aircraft industry for a school that would address FAA certification requirements.
Announcing the purchase earlier this year by the UK’s BBA Group of Tyler International School of Aviation at Texas’ Tyler Pounds Field, David McRobert, chief executive of BBA-owned British flight school Oxford Aviation Training, said, “This is an excellent step forward for all of us and I’m very excited by the potential.
In December of this year Jim Jackson, who developed what is arguably one of the most successful and innovative aerospace education programs at the high-school level, will be retiring after 33 years of teaching at Mundelein (Ill.) High Schooll. MHS boasts the only aviation curriculum in the country that includes building real aircraft in addition to ground school and flight-simulator instruction.
It is common knowledge within the field of aviation that there is a diminishing pool of pilots and mechanics from which to fill a growing demand. But the situation is not quite so simple. Gary Kiteley, executive director of the University Aviation Association, said that while enrollments in collegiate aviation programs began increasing about three years ago, it is important to consider the inherent time lag in producing viable employees.
Steven Levesque has been appointed president of Hawthorne Corp. headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina, following the sudden death of former president Dean Harton in March. Levesque was previously senior vice president of Hawthorne. He had been with the company from 1995 to 1998 and then rejoined it in 2007. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration.
Recognizing that some aircraft operators will want to equip with terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS) even though they are not required to do so, the FAA is proposing the addition of a third class for TAWS, possibly to be known as class C. Class-A and -B TAWS are required in turbine aircraft with six or more passenger seats, with the higher-level class-A TAWS intended for larger Part 91 airplanes and commercial aircraft.
There is a justifiable argument to be made that waiting until students are in college to expose them to a career option is too late. Jeff Lee, director of flight operations for IBM in White Plains, N.Y., agrees.
Where will we find tomorrow’s pilots? The military, long a provider of trained aviators, hasn’t produced sufficient numbers to satisfy the civil aviation demand for quite some time. It is the collegiate and private-academy flight-training programs that have taken up the slack and will continue to be the primary provider of pilots indefinitely.
Altitude chamber training is now being offered by MedAire at Arizona State University. The Tempe, Ariz.-based medical emergency response firm said the stand-alone, five- to six-hour course–available on demand–costs $995 per person and covers physiology, hypoxia, oxygen systems, altitude sickness and the physical effects of flight and decompression.