Students interested in aviation enjoyed a week-long immersion in the topic during the St. John’s Prep Summer Institute aviation course recently.
Brother Timothy Paul, CFX, a biology teacher at St. John's, moderator of the Aviation Club and a licensed pilot, led the course, which focused on various aviation-related career opportunities for young people. Students explored many aspects of the aviation industry including piloting in general and commercial aviation, airport management and maintenance, air traffic control, flight school management, aviation opportunities in the military, airport security, and aircraft maintenance.
Along with classroom instruction covering general principles of aeronautics and aviation, navigation techniques, and “powerplants” (various kinds of engines), the class visited Beverly and Lawrence airports, North Andover Flight Academy (helicopters), Boston TRACON (air traffic control), Manchester airport air traffic control tower, and an “air side” tour of Logan airport. At Portsmouth International airport, the students visited PlaneSense Aviation and Premier Aviation, where they were able to learn about several different kinds of general aviation aircraft.
The group also spent time at Pease Air National Guard Base, where they got to fly in the KC135 refueling aircraft simulator, the only one of its kind on the East Coast. The class also got to inspect a KC135 refueling aircraft out on the ramp from nose to boom!
At Logan airport, students saw the maintenance facility, where the snow removal equipment is considered to be the best in the Northeast. Logan's fire department, refueling depot, central operations, construction operations, radar facilities and navigation facilities were all part of the day, as well. A highlight of the Logan tour was going out to the ramp next to the runway, to watch the new Japan Airlines Boeing 787 taxi and take off on its daily non-stop flight from Boston to Tokyo.
After an instruction period on aircraft engines in the St. John’s Prep classroom, the final day brought the students to the National Aviation Academy at Bedford Airport, where they saw how aviation maintenance students learn to service and maintain every part of an aircraft from a “simple” single engine aircraft to a complex commercial airplane.
The young aviators had a great week and we’re looking forward to another exciting aviation course next summer!