Students tackle airport issues, gain real-life experience
By: Dee Anne Thomas
12/26/12 5:34 PM
Falcon Field Airport
For Release: Dec. 17, 2012
Contact: Dee Anne Thomas
Marketing/Communications Specialist II
Aviation students at regional universities are gaining real-world experience while completing course requirements through a partnership with Mesa’s Falcon Field Airport.
This fall, students from Arizona State University’s Aviation Management Technology program have worked in two project teams to address airport needs. The program has a capstone requirement that students work as part of a team to address current airport management issues. One student consulting team has been working to develop recommended minimum standards for on-airport fuel and aviation services providers as well as policies for self-fueling of aircraft and co-op fueling ventures. A second team has drafted minimum standards for flight training activities, including flight schools and independent flight instructors; aircraft maintenance and repair services; and mobile aircraft washing services.
Minimum standards are commonly used in the aviation industry to guide commercial aviation businesses operating at airports. They ensure that businesses are treated fairly and equitably; help maintain high-quality, adequate services for airport users; protect the public from unlicensed and unauthorized products and services; promote orderly development of airport land; and promote airport safety.
“Falcon Field continually works to reach out to students who are interested in aviation and support them in entering the industry,” Airport Director Corinne Nystrom said. “These projects help the students with their graduation requirements, but the Airport benefits from the assistance students provide toward our operational goals. It’s a win-win situation.”
A student team from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Aviation Business Administration program also is fulfilling requirements to work on an actual private or public business situation. The group has been working to develop strategies for education and outreach to airport tenants to support the Airport’s communication goals.
These are not the first university projects that Falcon Field has supported. Last year another Embry Riddle student team researched and developed a strategic plan for general airport management and business development, and an ASU team proposed ideas for promoting aviation to youth.
“It’s always interesting to have fresh eyes examining issues,” Nystrom said. “We enjoy hearing the students’ ideas because their perspectives and experiences produce ideas we hadn’t considered.”
In addition to university projects, Falcon Field hosts the Mesa Public Schools’ Aviation Camp for middle school students every summer and offers tours to school and scout groups.
“We want to spark their interest in aviation and help students see the pathway for achieving their dreams through a career in aviation,” Nystrom said.
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