As the U.S faces a shortage of professional pilots, the Community College of Beaver County is partnering with high schools in the county in order to give students the opportunity get early exposure to careers in aviation.
In January, CCBC will launch its Aviation Academy, the first program in the region that gives high school students a head start on earning college credits while receiving training in aviation.
Students in grades 10 to 12 can choose between four pathways, including professional pilot, air traffic control, aerospace management and unmanned aerial vehicles. Under the dual enrollment program, students will spend half of the day at their high school and the other half taking courses in science, technology, engineering and math taught by CCBC faculty on campus at the college’s new Aviation Sciences Center in Chippewa.
CCBC held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday to mark the opening of the facility.
“Through partnerships, we are addressing high-priority workforce, economic development and quality-of-life needs for our county and region,” CCBC President Chris Reber said in a statement. “Today’s launch of our CCBC Aviation High School Academy is a shining example of how, when we come together to serve students, the outcome can be greater than the sum of the parts, and everyone wins.”
Students who spend three years in the academy can earn more than half of their associate’s degree credits by the time they graduate from high school.
CCBC is partnering with the Beaver County Airport Authority, local and state legislators, Moore aviation, ACES Aviation and the CCBC Foundation board for the academy.