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Auburn Tigers Continue Aviation Traditions in Alabama

Students from Auburn University in Alabama came to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 to promote the Auburn University Aviation Center.

By Auburn Students

  • Auburn University Ambassadors.  L->R front: Hanna Fowler, Earle Thompson.  Rear: Michael Rogers, Phillip Settlemeyer, James Hall, Will Leveille.
    Auburn University Ambassadors. L->R front: Hanna Fowler, Earle Thompson. Rear: Michael Rogers, Phillip Settlemeyer, James Hall, Will Leveille.

July 25, 2015 - They ask the question: “Can Tigers fly?”

When it's the Auburn University Tigers, the answer is “Yes, they can!”

Auburn Aviation is represented at EAA AirVenture 2015 at Booth C25 in the Aviation Gateway Park by students promoting the aviation education opportunities at the school.

It's just the latest in a long and storied history of aviation at the Alabama institution that traces back to the Wright brothers in 1907. The brothers returned and from late March to late May 1910, Wilbur and Orville operated the nation’s first civilian flying school on open land just west of the Montgomery city limits on what is now Maxwell Air Force Base.

These were the first heavier-than-air flights in the state they set the stage for a century of aerospace development in Alabama.

Auburn University began flight training in the 1930’s, started a degree program under the College of Engineering in 1941 and since Auburn Aviation has become one of the most well-respected collegiate flight schools in the nation.

Then in July of 2014, the University's administration, Auburn Aviation administration, faculty, and staff created the Auburn University Aviation Center to promote economic development and work with state and industry leaders to strengthen the two aviation degree programs located in Auburn’s Raymond J. Harbert College of Business, aviation management and professional flight management.

According to Auburn University Aviation Center Director Dr. Bill Hutto, “the sky is the limit” for aviation education at Auburn University.

The university is also tapping into the potential for unmanned flight after receiving the nation’s first FAA authorization to operate an unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) flight training school. This, so say students here at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2015, provides another example of how Auburn is growing with the times, yet still holding onto its roots. “It is a major win for the state,” said Alabama Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey and “an honor for Auburn University,” said Dr. Bill Hutto. 

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