One week, Carly Alsup’s attending the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, Tennessee, listening to the likes of Pearl Jam, Grace Potter and Chris Stapleton.
A few days later, the Murfreesboro resident and Central Magnet School sophomore found herself on a different stratosphere. She and 14 other teenagers attended the MTSU Aerospace Advanced Professional Pilot Camp June 13-15 at the university’s Jean A. Jack Flight Operations Center at Murfreesboro Airport.
MTSU’s Department of Aerospace holds intensive Introduction to Aviation and Advanced Pro Pilot camps each year for teens on campus and at the airport.
“We’ve gotten to fly a lot and learned a lot,” said Alsup, 15, who said she “absolutely” plans to consider attending MTSU after graduating.
“I’ve learned different maneuvers and things you should do while you’re still up in the air, in case of a stall or how to get out of a stall, and different aspects of the science of how the plane actually flies.”
Al Smith, 17, a senior at Collierville High School in Tennessee’s Shelby County who’s planning to attend MTSU, said he “had learned about the basics of the Diamond DA-40, weight and balance in the planes and how to check and track the weather.” The Diamond DA-40 comprises most of MTSU’s fleet.
Jackson Coker, 17, a senior at Munford High School in Tipton County, said the advanced camp “lived up to my expectations and my expectations were pretty high. They (MTSU faculty and staff) have a pretty good reputation. … The camp helps prepare you for the professional world of aviation.”
Dr. Wendy Beckman, the camp director and interim aerospace department chair, said attendees flew the simulators in the new flight simulator building, flew at least three times and learned about navigation and weather — all knowledge they might receive in a private pilot ground school.
To learn more about the 2017 Introduction to Aviation and Advanced Pro Pilot camps, call 615-898-2788.
— Randy Weiler (Randy.Weiler@mtsu.edu)
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