Eastern Michigan University Students Fly To Florida


As many students traveled home for the holidays, students in Eastern Michigan University’s Aviation Program flew south for the winter break, bound for Venice, Fla.

Students departed on a seven-day Venture Learning journey to Venice, with stops in Lexington, Ky. and Albany, Ga., plus a hop to Key West. Four instructors and six students applied their flying skills while maintaining a safe course during EMU Aviation’s annual Venture Learning Trip, which took place over EMU’s holiday break, from Dec. 27 to Jan. 2.

The Venture Learning program was designed to introduce EMU Aviation students to various flight scenarios and challenges, such as instrument weather conditions, cross-country flight planning, mountainous terrain and flying at night.

Trip provides real-world flying challenges

“Flying down there, we experienced instrument flying, mountainous terrain handling and non-towered operations,” said Brent Mosley, a flight instructor at the Eagle Flight Centre and a 2015 graduate of the program. “[This trip] is a prime example of the real-world challenges I’m looking forward to experiencing at an airline.”

The trip began at 5 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 27, when the group met at Eagle Flight Centre in Ypsilanti to discuss its departure and route details for the trip to Venice. The group departed Willow Run Airport at 6 a.m. and flew to Blue Grass Airport in Lexington, KY, followed by a hop to Southwest Georgia Regional Airport in Dougherty County, GA, and then on to Venice Beach.

Asked about his favorite part of the trip, Evan Morr, a junior in EMU’s Aviation program, said, “Flying down to Key West was a lot of fun. Then we spent the day on the island, rented mopeds, snorkeled and swam in the ocean.”

Goal: To fly for regional carrier, then a major airline

Morr is currently working towards his instrument rating. He hopes to first fly for a regional air carrier and eventually be hired by a major airline such as American, Delta or United.

Even when faced with a patch of rough weather on the flight back, everyone arrived safely at Willow Run Airport.

“It was great for our students to get real-world experience dealing with thunderstorms, potential icing, and low clouds,” said Mosley. “It’s an experience that these students and instructors will take with them throughout their careers.”

Morr said, “I’m amazed at how much my confidence level has improved. Trips like these make me feel more confident than ever in my abilities.”

The Aviation Program at EMU offers a bachelor’s of science in aviation flight technology and aviation management and a dispatch certification. Students in the program fly in technologically sophisticated aircraft out of the Eagle Flight Centre, located at Willow Run Airport. The EMU fleet includes several new Cessna 172SP Skyhawks, equipped with state-of-the-art Garmin G1000 glass cockpit avionics; two complex Cessna 172RGs, and a multi-engine Piper Seminole.

For more information, visit emich.edu/aviation or call the Eagle Flight Centre at 734-481-3000.

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest university in Michigan. It currently serves 22,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University’s Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Health and Human Services; Technology, and its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit emich.edu