EAA AVIATION CENTER, OSHKOSH, Wisconsin — (September 27, 2022) — Following the success that brought hundreds of pilots and young people to the new EAA Education Center during EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, plans are moving forward to begin year-round programming at the new facility that opened in July adjacent to the EAA Aviation Museum in Oshkosh.
“A continual response from the thousands of people who toured the new facility during AirVenture week was, ‘This would be a great facility for…’ with ideas encompassing aviation education for all ages,” said Jack J. Pelton, EAA CEO and Chairman of the Board. “Our challenge is now to take all of those marvelous ideas and turn them into viable year-round programming that fits the EAA mission of growing participation in aviation.”
The Pilot Proficiency Center area hosted numerous full-capacity sessions during AirVenture week that featured clinics that incorporated Redbird flight simulators in scenarios that ranged from mountain flying techniques to emergency flight procedures. It gave instructors an opportunity to collect substantial information on what clinics are most appealing to pilots who want to improve their flying and decision-making skills.
“Those who participated during AirVenture had plenty of suggestions for using the Pilot Proficiency Center as a major learning opportunity for aircraft type clubs, EAA chapters, and even as an FAA training program site,” said Jeremy Desruisseaux, EAA’s director of flight proficiency programs. “As we build our flight instructor roster to help lead the clinics, there is no limit to the possibilities that could occur here in Oshkosh.”
Meanwhile, the Youth Education Center has become home for EAA’s youth education programs, allowing those activities to be enhanced with the expanded capabilities of the new facility, including labs and classrooms. In addition to field trip opportunities for students, new evening and weekend aviation education programming is being developed, with more information now available on EAA’s website.
“What AirVenture week’s inaugural programming showed us was the enthusiasm young people had to ‘dig in’ to the projects and the fun way of learning in the facility,” said Courtney Condon, one of EAA’s educators in the Youth Education Center. “This will give us a roadmap to the kinds of activities that will best connect the world of flight to young people eager to discover more.”
Several year-round programs are in various stages of introduction, with specifics to be announced as they are finalized. In addition, the Education Center’s gathering space welcomed more than 1,000 guests as the entrance for The Gathering annual fundraiser on July 28. That area is available for rental by aviation and community groups, as well as for other functions.
The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) is based in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and embodies The Spirit of Aviation through the world’s most engaged community of aviation enthusiasts. EAA’s 250,000 members and 900 local chapters enjoy the fun and camaraderie of sharing their passion for flying, building and restoring recreational aircraft. For more information on EAA and its programs, call 800-JOIN-EAA (800-564-6322) or go to www.eaa.org. For continual news updates, connect with www.twitter.com/EAA.