All posts tagged 'KIAE'

A Conversation with the Next Generation of Pilots

The Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education (KIAE) is a one-of-a-kind endeavor, currently networking 20 high schools in the state to provide students direct experiences in aeronautical engineering, flight, aircraft maintenance, and space systems. When I asked Tim Smith, Director of Frankfort High School’s Aviation program and CIO for KIAE, why this was important, he said, "Programs like these will lead to more students enrolling in post-secondary opportunities in flight/aeronautics, aircraft maintenance, aeronautical engineering, space systems engineering, aerospace computer engineering, air traffic control, and aviation management/operations. Another important element of expansion is that potential grant opportunities and other sponsorships examine viability and scale of the initiative. So, it is important to show its implementation in a variety of environments. In short, the more students that are studying aerospace, the more that will enter the workforce."

Three of their students got to experience a different end of the spectrum when they rode along with a gathering of Yakolevs at Bowman Field in Louisville, KY (just outside GlobalAir.com’s office). See more on the gathering itself here. I spent a few minutes with Michael Dahl, Jason Smith and Seth Padgett just before they climbed into their respective cockpits for a bit of formation flying.

Michael Dahl climbing into a Yak to experience formation flying.

GlobalAir: What inspired each your interests in aviation?

Michael Dahl: My uncle took me flying in an open-air cockpit bi-plane right here at Bowman Field when I was 11 years old, and that summer I flew on a commercial airliner on our vacation to California - all that exposure to flying in a short amount of time got my attention. When I found there was an aviation-related program at Frankfort High School, I made sure to get involved!

Jason Smith: My mother often took me to the airport as a baby to let the sounds of aircraft calm me, so I’ve been interested a long time! I knew after seeing "Top Gun" that I wanted to be a fighter pilot – I even dressed like Maverick for Halloween once.

GA: You’re too tall to play Tom Cruise!

JS: (laughs) Well, this was a while ago. Then I got involved with the aviation program at school. I was also motivated by learning about the various mission aviation programs that exist when I was at Oshkosh, so I’ve also become interested in contributing there.

Seth Padgett: I was born in Germany, so I’ve been on aircraft since I was a child flying back and forth to visit family. I became more seriously involved through an aviation camp where we did flight planning, and from there Tim Smith turned me on to the KIAE program in Frankfort.

Jason Smith receiving a safety briefing on riding along in the Yak.

GA: What have been the biggest obstacles for each of you in pursuing your pilot’s licenses?

MD: I was always concerned about "what if there’s a problem during flight"? I had to tell myself to get past it and stop being afraid to try.

JS: For me, it’s the number of hoops you have to jump thru, plus the financial burden. But, even though it’s a cliché, you truly can do anything you set your mind to do.

SP: It’s so much easier to get a driver’s license – take a test, drive an instructor around, and you’re done. Earning your pilot’s license is such a time investment; it’s easy to get discouraged. You have to remind yourself that you will get there, just be patient and stay focused!

GA: We, in the aviation industry, already know that bringing youth to aviation is vital to growing the industry. So what would you want to share with kids your age that may be interested, but intimidated, by flying?

SP: Statistically speaking, flying is very safe. When you see how many check-ups and tests you have to do to become a pilot and take care of your aircraft, you’ll see there’s nothing to be intimidated by.

MD: If you’ve never flown before, or are scared of flying, find an airport and see if anyone is willing to take you up and experience it for yourself. Learn more about airplanes & how they work - that’s how I got hooked!

JS: I agree – get up and fly! Talking about it isn’t enough!

Seth Padgett scoping the taxi path as they maneuver for takeoff.

GA: Lastly, what do you plan to do with your licenses – personal enjoyment, or career aspirations?

MD: Right now, mostly personal enjoyment. It’s still a little early for me to look beyond to career options.

JS: I mentioned earlier about being a fighter pilot and doing missionary work – which requires mechanical knowledge as well, so I’m putting focus there too.

SP: I’d like to fly for the Air Force initially. Afterward, I’ll likely transition to flying for services like UPS, FedEx, Delta – many options! But also personal enjoyment for sure!

Shortly after our conversations, all six pilots met and discussed formations, with the three boys listening intently. The students then met with the pilots of their Yaks and got personal instructions for their safety and knowledge about occupying the second seat. I marveled at the focus they all had on the task at hand as I snapped a few pictures – my presence wasn’t even registering anymore. They were now sponges, soaking in everything about the aircraft they were climbing aboard!

A few gallons of avgas were added, the Yaks (and their accompanying Cessna 172R and Christen Eagle II) taxied out and took to the air. I managed to catch a couple of passes over Bowman Field before I had to leave for another appointment, so I didn’t get to stick around to get their impressions afterward. But I think it was safe to assume that it was nothing but joy and excitement all around!

Watch the Yaks, 172 and Christen Eagle taxi out for takeoff!

GlobalAir.com Announced to Board of KIAE

GlobalAir.com is pleased to announce Jeffrey Carrithers, president and CEO to the board of the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education (KIAE).

Louisville, Kentucky. (Feb. 21, 2013) – GlobalAir.com, a leading web-based aviation information website, is pleased to announce Jeffrey Carrithers, president and CEO of Globalair.com has been appointed to the board of the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education (KIAE). The KIAE program caters to high school students who wish to pursue careers in the aviation industry. The KIAE mission is to improve student learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and create career pathways in aerospace throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

As the program continues to grow, the KIAE requires a strong board of members to help drive students to success in multiple fields of aviation knowledge. Flight department heads, UPS pilots, aviation mechanics, and flight instructors are among the board as well. Similar to any other field of knowledge, aviation offers a large variety of potential, as well as positions and career employment opportunities. At the beginning of each calendar year, the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education’s board is assessed and made stronger; this year’s additions were no different. Mr. Carrithers was brought onto the board for his extended knowledge in aviation business, including advertising, web development, web design, marketing, public relations, etc. The director of the KIAE, Tim Smith has said “Jeff brings aviation business careers to the institute; this is something that is relatively new this year. Jeff offers an expanded wealth of knowledge regarding the “suit and tie” side of aviation.“

Carrithers notes, “The KIAE program is one of the most unique curriculums I have seen in any education system, much less in an aviation environment. One of the hardest jobs our teachers have is discovering how to engage their students”. He continues, “Engaging our youth in mathematics and physics is difficult. KIAE shows students these principles through aviation and how they work in everyday life applications. From preliminary reports we have seen thus far, this program is really working”. The KIAE program caters to high school students from twenty different high schools throughout Kentucky and southern Indiana; thus making up for twenty-five percent of the high school aerospace participants nationwide. KIAE is working hard to motivate young adults as they achieve their aerospace career goals.

About the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education
Tim Smith founded KIAE in 2010 while he was searching to find a method of teaching that would allow students to engage in fun, yet educational activities; both inside as well as outside of the classroom. What Tim found was a self-produced program commonly referred to as STEM learning. The STEM program was developed to reach out to students providing hands-on training in various aviation career fields. Tim would however, be sure to include science, technology, engineering and mathematics; thus making up the four letters of “STEM.” Due primarily to the STEM learning system, the KIAE was built, incorporating airworthy/part 91 certified aircraft that students worked to build for themselves. Educators hope to use the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education hand in hand with the STEM program to change state testing scores as well as motivate students to get excited about aviation. Aviation is an attainable goal; especially for high school students who have been offered this opportunity to jump start their careers. Not only are they given guidance from real life aviation professionals, but they are granted a scholarship and inevitably a chance to change their lives. For more information regarding the Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education please visit kiae.org.

About GlobalAir.com
Based in Louisville, Kentucky, GlobalAir.com serves the general aviation, business aircraft, and regional airline communities by offering clients and online visitors a wide range of premium aircraft and aviation-related data and services. Services offered by GlobalAir.com include Aircraft Exchange (www.globalair.com/aircraft_for_sale) which lists aircraft for sale or lease, Airport Resource Center (ARC) (www.globalair.com/airport) that displays U.S. airport data, as well as the flight path planning application Max-Trax (www.airportfuelprices.com). Each of GlobalAir.com’s websites receives more than 300,000 visitors per month and helps connect the aviation industry. For more information regarding GlobalAir.com, visit www.globalair.com, e-mail webmaster@globalair.com, or call 888-236-4309.

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Contact for Further Information

Jeffrey Carrithers

Globalair.com
888-236-4309
Jeffrey@ganmail.com
www.Globalair.com

Tim Smith
Kentucky Institute for Aerospace Education
502-320-9490
tim@kiae.org
www.kiae.org

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