Open house to showcase new aviation program in Plymouth
PLYMOUTH, Ind. – An open house Monday will introduce a new Aviation Flight Program for area high school students. The program is a collaboration between Plymouth High School, the City of Plymouth and a new flight school called AlphaFlight.
“It’s going to open a lot of doors for kids that didn’t have the opportunities before,” said Bill Sheley, the manager at the Plymouth Municipal Airport.
The program will take place at the airport. It will be available for juniors and seniors within the North Central Area Vocational Cooperative. That includes Plymouth, Triton, Union-North United, John Glenn, Knox, Triton, Rochester, Culver, Oregon-Davis, North Judson-San Pierre, and Argos.
The year-long program will allow students to earn up to 6 high school credits while gaining experience in a simulator. They’ll also be able to log five hours of flight time with a Certified Flight Instructor.
“The guys that are running the aviation program, the flight school here, both have varied backgrounds with very successful aviation backgrounds that they can help lead the students towards military or commercial or all the different facets of the different types of flying that are out there that they could do,” said Sheley.
Sheley is in the process of remodeling and preparing the airport for the incoming students. The program with start with the start of the 2018-2019 school year.
“It’s going to add a lot of activity out here and give us a chance to showcase the airport,” said Sheley.
He also says it will give students a chance to see the various career opportunities inside an airport. Those career opportunities are something Plymouth High School Guidance Counselor John Fishback says students might not be aware of.
“I have a lot of students that will meet with me and say ‘Hey Fishback I’m not sure I know what I want to do,’ and they don’t even realize that this is a potential market. Its high demand, high wage, it’s on the governor’s list of next level jobs,” said Fishback. “So if we’ve got kids that have some talent and hard work and they just haven’t found a direction yet, if we can expose them to this it might be a great opportunity.”
Fishback helped to organize the program. He says they hope the program gives kids the tools they need to pursue a career in aviation at a fraction of the cost.
“Our hope is it will cut some of the expense off of what they’re going to have to do later as they advance towards their career goals,” he said.
For the students, the program will cost around $225 according to Fishback. That is cheaper than some other CTE programs that the high school offers. Fishback says the school also hopes to make the course dual credit in the future.
Monday’s open house is a chance to bring more awareness to the program. It will give students and parents a chance to see the airport and talk with instructors.
Fishback says all are welcome to attend. It will take place from 5-8 p.m. at the Plymouth Municipal Airport at 301 Airport Road in Plymouth.
For more information about AlphaFlight, click here.