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New flight coaching class prepares aviation college students for the mission discipline » Liberty Information

Liberty junior Caitlyn McCoy, who will start her one-year Aviation Upkeep Technician Program at Liberty in January, prepares to take off in a Cessna U-206 plane with JAARS flight teacher BJ Diggins. (Submitted images)

Liberty College’s College of Aeronautics lately launched its first residential course that provides mission-focused college students the chance to obtain their flight coaching necessities straight from instructors with a mission aviation group.

Final week, the varsity welcomed representatives from JAARS, a North Carolina-based mission aviation group, to instruct the primary Superior Plane Flight Operations class.

“We’re gearing the course towards our mission-minded college students whose aim is to serve on the mission discipline as an aviator, whether or not that be as a pilot or a mechanic,” mentioned Jonny Hewitt, Liberty’s Director of Flight Coaching.

He mentioned the high-performance flight coaching they obtain is a requirement for many missionary aviation organizations.

Liberty has labored with JAARS for years in its recruiting efforts. The group was based in 1948 to offer aviation and communication options for missionaries based mostly in distant areas, together with Central and South America, the Philippines, Papua, New Guinea, Indonesia, and plenty of elements of Africa. JAARS additionally companions with Wycliffe to assist Bible translation efforts worldwide.

Rachel Stoner, JAARS’ aviation engagement supervisor and a pilot with the group, was on web site for the coaching.

“Being in these distant areas, journey is tough,” she mentioned. “What could possibly be a 10-hour hike might take as brief as a 10- or 20-minute flight, so aviation has been confirmed during the last 75-plus years to be the very best mode of transport for our missionaries which might be based mostly on these locations.”

The JAARS-owned Cessna U-206 rests on the Liberty College of Aeronautics Flight Ops tarmac throughout a three-day coaching program from Nov. 7-9.

Stoner mentioned JAARS has a large fleet of plane obtainable to serve numerous areas with primitive airports and touchdown strips. She defined that the airplanes are all single-pilot, turbine plane that may carry out the brief takeoffs and landings wanted in marginal areas of the world.

“When the runways shrink, the airplanes must be extra highly effective, so the high-performance coaching permits our candidates, our pilots, to have the expertise and the certification as a way to fly these kind of plane, so that they are efficient and secure.”

Pilots have to be outfitted to not solely fly the planes, but additionally carry out upkeep on them. Many college students pursue their upkeep certificates by means of Liberty’s one-year Aviation Upkeep Technician program. Lately, the Aviation Expertise program has turn into more and more well-liked because it permits college students to earn their pilot and upkeep certificates inside a four-year diploma.

“It is tough to search out people who find themselves able to serve the Lord in locations like we have been serving, so we have to function plane with out a second pilot on board,” Stoner mentioned.

The coaching was accomplished in one in every of JAARS’ plane, a Cessna U-206.

“The controls felt loads heavier (in comparison with Liberty’s coaching plane, the Cessna Skyhawk 172), nevertheless it total went rather well and was actually enjoyable,” mentioned Caitlyn McCoy, an Aviation Expertise pupil who will start her AMTS certification in January “I positively really feel referred to as to mission aviation. I used to be actually enthusiastic about this as a result of this has been one of the crucial tangible steps that I’ve taken in direction of a future in mission aviation.”

Hewitt mentioned it’s encouraging to see God at work by means of the partnership with JAARS as a pipeline for sending college students into the sphere.

“That’s one thing very particular that we maintain close to and expensive to our hearts as a flight program,” he mentioned.

Hewitt mentioned an emphasis on missionary aviation was a dream of College of Aeronautics’ co-founder Ernie Rogers, and mirrored the unique imaginative and prescient of Liberty’s founder, the late Dr. Jerry Falwell.

“It was a calling that Dr. Falwell Sr. had,” Hewitt mentioned. “In an e-mail despatched the evening earlier than he died (in Might 2007), he mentioned his imaginative and prescient of him for this faculty was that he can be a pacesetter within the coaching of missionary aviators. We are attempting to see that into fruition. We’ve got a wonderful workforce throughout the College of Aeronautics who’re motivating our mission-minded college students who wish to go serve the Lord abroad utilizing aviation. There’s a number of cool issues which might be taking place, and we’re grateful for the assist from the general college as we get this mission again on activity. We’ve got a imaginative and prescient of going ahead to be one of many largest producers of missionary aviation aviators.”

JAARS representatives Rachel Stoner (from left) and BJ Diggins, Liberty student-pilots Samuel Wayland, SJ Kim, and Caitlyn McCoy, Liberty senior flight teacher Joel King, College of Aeronautics co-founder Ernie Rogers, and Liberty Director of Flight Coaching Jonny Hewitt stand on the tarmac in entrance of the JAARS Cessna U-206 on the Flight Ops coaching base.

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