Aviation Summer Academy
The first ever Aviation Summer Academy hosted by Saint Louis University’s Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology took place June 26 – July 1, 2016. The Summer Academy provided an opportunity for 19 high school juniors and seniors from the St. Louis Metro area as well as across the nation to explore the diverse fields of aviation.
During the academy, the participating students worked with Parks College faculty, certified flight instructors (CFIs), staff, and current students. They participated in labs and academic modules on the main SLU campus on topics such as air traffic control, team resource management, and pilot safety and risk management. Over at the St. Louis Downtown Airport at the Parks College Hangar, they took ground lessons on aircraft systems, weights and balances, reading charts and creating flight plans. They also flew the flight simulators, learned how to preform pre-flight checks on aircraft, and took discovery flights in the Diamond DA20 aircraft.
Throughout the week, the group went on field trips to Jet Aviation, Midwest Helicopters, the St. Louis Downtown Airport Air Traffic Control Tower, Lambert International Airport, and the Greater St. Louis Air and Space Museum. A couple guest speakers also visited the students at the academy and presented on their work within the aviation industry: Parks Alum Chris Bauer who works with Garmin avionics, and First Officer Jack Eastes with ExpressJet who talked about a day in the life of a commercial pilot. In addition, the students all stayed on SLU’s main campus, getting an inside look at college life. To culminate the week, the students flew in various SLU aircraft with the CFIs to Chesterfield for some additional flight instruction, and went out for a celebratory dinner.
AeroNavData contributed as a sponsor to the camp, and provided two full-tuition scholarships for the Aviation Summer Academy. With this contribution and the contributions of the other sponsors, ten students received full-tuition scholarships to attend the academy, inspiring the next generation of pilots and aviation professionals.