Aviation Program Spreads Its Wings with Renaming of College

Published: September 27, 2019 | Author: David Bishop | Read Time: 2 minutes

tail end of three southern utah air planesDuring its board meeting on Friday, September 27, Southern Utah University’s Board of Trustees approved the creation of the College of Aerospace Sciences and Technology (CAST). The move renames an existing school and demonstrates the increased emphasis SUU has placed on the university’s aviation program. 

Created in 2013, SUU’s Aviation Program is already a national leader – training 10 percent of the nation’s helicopter and a significant number of airplane pilots. 

“We are committed to helping address the national and global shortage of pilots and technicians,” said Scott L Wyatt, president of Southern Utah University. “The creation of this college will help us focus on building the best quality program possible to meet the needs of the aerospace industry.”

The Board of Trustees’ action officially dissolves what was previously known as the School of Integrative and Engaged Learning (SIEL) and restructures the existing unit to create the new college. Programs previously located in SIEL unrelated to the new mission have been reassigned to other areas within the University structure. 

“The creation of the College of Aerospace Sciences and Technology along with the dissolving of the School of Integrated and Engaged Learning provides a tightening of focus and a streamlining of departments,” said Richard Christiansen, Chairman of the SUU Board of Trustees. “We are excited about the CAST formation and look forward to SUU being a major education provider in not only pilot training but also providing support services such as aviation maintenance.”

SUU offers both associate and bachelor’s degrees in multiple aviation fields of study. With the college now focused on aerospace studies, the goal will be to expand degree programs building SUU’s national prestige in the aviator sector. 

“The hard work and dedication of the entire aviation team has transformed aviation training across the globe,” said Michael Mower, executive director of SUU Aviation Services. “It is this devotion by SUU’s senior administration and Board of Trustees that led to the creation of the College of Aerospace Sciences and Technology.”

The new college will focus on career and technical education in the aviation industry. Plans are already underway to create a new Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) program in 2020. Future growth will include degree offerings in aviation management, and a cabin crew training program. 

More than 400 students from around the world study at the SUU Aviation program, which includes a fleet of 14 airplanes, 12 helicopters and state of the art facilities. In 2018, SUU was instrumental in convincing the Federal Aviation Administration to change outdated regulations for maintenance technician school training. President Donald Trump signed those changes into law in October 2018

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