NetJets boosts Ohio State partnership with donation of seven Cessna training aircraft
Lift is essential to flight. Likewise, a philanthropic lift has proven critical to the growth of The Ohio State University’s aviation and flight education programs.
In 2011 NetJets, the worldwide leader in private aviation, donated $2 million to establish Ohio State’s Center for Aviation Studies. In 2015 NetJets gave an additional $1 million to fund faculty leadership positions, NextGen aviation research initiatives and internship opportunities. In an event at The Ohio State University Airport, NetJets reaffirmed its partnership with Ohio State through its donation of seven Cessna Skyhawk 172 training aircraft.
With a Cessna Skyhawk 172 training aircraft glistening in the background, NetJets Executive Vice President of Operations Alan Bobo explained that the company’s donations also serve as investments in the future.
”At NetJets, safety is our highest priority, and that means investing in the training of the next generation of pilots,” said Bobo. “We have an unyielding commitment to ensuring the safety of our skies, and giving students the opportunity to fly state-of-the-art aircraft is one of many ways we are fulfilling that commitment.”
The new aircraft will enable Ohio State to keep up with demand from students interested in flying careers. Since 2013, enrollment in aviation majors has increased dramatically from less than 100 to 260. Nearly half of these students are focusing on professional pilot certification. The aircraft will also be used to further aviation research. In 2008, NetJets donated four Cessna training aircrafts that are still in use.
“These planes will improve the way students learn and expose them to advanced technology in the cockpit,” said flight education student Samantha Hernandez. “This generous donation will enable Ohio State to welcome and teach more aviation students and encourage them to follow their dreams.”
Ohio State and NetJets share an interest in ensuring a highly qualified and accessible workforce for the growing aviation industry.
“It is not hyperbole to say that but for NetJets, Ohio State aviation and flight education might not be here today,” said College of Engineering Dean David B. Williams. “This partnership is a model for us. We both want to develop the nation’s best aviation education program that will continue to supply NetJets the pilots it needs to continue its growth.”
In addition to workforce development, NetJets and Ohio State are collaborating on Next Generation Air Transportation System research and implementation, working in partnership with the Federal Aviation Administration’s NextGen program. By integrating data analytics with aviation operations, Ohio State and NetJets hope to innovate new solutions to further enhance aviation safety, accessibility and sustainability.