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Aviation academy set to soar with university

By Brian Knox | Published Wednesday, September 16, 2015
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Northwest ISD students interested in a career in aviation technology will soon be able to attend an academy at a school whose mascot soars through the skies.

NISD has partnered with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to create an Aeronautics and Aviation Academy at the new V.R. Eaton High School, home of the Eagles, in north Fort Worth. It is the first district in Texas to partner with the university.

Making It Official

MAKING IT OFFICIAL – Northwest ISD Superintendent Karen Rue and Executive Director of Enrollment Services and Partnerships with Embry-Riddle Worldwide J. Michael Williams sign the paperwork making the partnership between the two schools for the Aviation Academy official. Messenger photo by Brian Knox

Through online and dual enrollment courses, students can get a head start by taking college courses in aviation/aerospace and engineering to help them earn their degree. NISD and Embry-Riddle have also partnered with Tarrant County College (TCC) to ensure the classes taken through their aviation program will transfer.

“This academy will provide for students an opportunity to explore a pathway into this high-paying and vitally important job sector that is entrenched in Northwest ISD,” said NISD Superintendent Dr. Karen Rue. “This addition comes at a great time, with more than 300 aviation employers in the North Texas area and nearly 2,500 jobs available annually in Texas for the aviation and aeronautics sector.”

The academy will begin in the fall of 2016.

Rue joined J. Michael Williams, executive director of enrollment services and partnerships with Embry-Riddle Worldwide, at a signing ceremony last Friday at Eaton High School to make the partnership official.

Williams said the academy is all about making sure students have the option to pursue a career that interests them, and he looked forward to helping the next generation of students in Texas.

“This will be the flagship program for the state of Texas,” he said. “Any other districts that come on board may come here to take a look at what is being done here because they will be held to the standard that we implement here at the Northwest school district.”

CyLynn Braswell, director for career and technology education at Northwest ISD, said the first-year freshman course will be taught in-house with the district’s own aeronautics instructor.

“To start that process as early as a freshman in high school is truly amazing,” she said. “We feel like this partnership will be an excellent one.”

The academy will be open to any student in Northwest ISD.

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