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EKU Aviation Selects New Program Director

Ralph Gibbs in front of aircraft

President Doug Whitlock and Eastern Kentucky University have set the aviation bar even higher. As part of his 5-year plan for aviation, President Whitlock, in consultation with Dean Bob Rogow, Associate Dean Ed Davis, and Department Chair Tim Ross, has created a Director of Aviation (DOA)/Chief Flight Instructor position within the Applied Engineering and Technology Department.

This staff and faculty person will have management oversight of the four key aspects to EKU's aviation program. He/she will be responsible to oversee aviation academics, flight training, airport operations, and aviation safety programs. For academics, the DOA will create, staff, and revise all new aviation curriculum initiatives. Additionally, in this capacity the DOA will host an advisory board to review the EKU aviation curriculum for relevance to emergent industry and FAA needs.

As the Chief Flight instructor, the DOA will monitor all flight instructors flying for EKU, ensuring that they are properly trained, meet FAA requirements, and are standardized to EKU's world class flight instruction model. As DOA, this staff person will work with the Madison County airport manager, to integrate airport requirements with flight training requirements, i.e., finding adequate ramp space and obtaining all airfield operational requirements for a safe flight training and general aviation environment.  As the aviation safety officer for EKU, the DOA will work as part of the EKU safety team and develop safety procedures unique to aviation operations.

The assistant chief flight instructor, the airport FBO manager, and all existing aviation faculty will assist the DOA as he/she steers the aviation program strategically toward airport expansion and curriculum revision to accommodate student enrollment increases of 250 percent by fall 2013 (from 100 students to 250 students). Mr. Ralph Gibbs, EKU's existing Chief Flight Instructor, has been selected and has agreed to serve as both the DOA and Chief Flight Instructor.

Contact Information

Mr. Ralph Gibbs
donald.gibbs@eku.edu

Published on May 07, 2012

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