Aviation Day Provides Peek into the Industry

Posted on March 22nd, 2016 by Travis Dix


Dreams soared high at Averett University’s Aviation Day on Friday, March 18. More than 100 people packed the Student Center’s multipurpose room on Friday, March 18 for the day-long event, which included guest speakers, presentations, breakout sessions and a tour of the airport.

Sixteen prospective students and their families joined current aeronautics students, faculty, staff and alumni to learn more about the aviation industry and Averett’s aeronautics major. With a current national shortage of pilots, the theme of the day was the bountiful opportunities these future pilots may have.

“This is good news for all students, as they know that there will be a job waiting for them as soon as they graduate and obtain all of their pilot certificates,” said Travis Williams ’00, chief flight instructor. “It was also a chance for our current students to start networking with our alumni, as the aviation community is small and the more people you know, the more opportunities may come your way.”

Almost 20 aeronautics alumni from a broad range of aviation career paths, including major and regional airlines, corporate pilots and police and military pilots, attended the event.

DSC08755_web“Every one of those guys over there was you,” said Bernie Morrell ’88, G550 captain for Bank of America, as he pointed to the long line of alumni at the side of the room. “They all came on their own time and dime for you. It speaks volumes to the Averett University community and network.”

Averett is currently reviewing an agreement for a pilot cadet program with Ohio-based PSA Airlines, a regional airline under the American Airlines umbrella. Once finalized, aeronautics majors will have the opportunity to interview for PSA’s cadet program after achieving their Private Pilot Certificate – something that usually happens within the freshmen year of college – and flow through the program to become a cadet instructor, then eventually a PSA pilot, and finally a pilot with American Airlines.

“We are honored to be one of the initial 14 universities they have chosen to partner with, and I think that speaks volumes about the quality of our program,” Williams said.