aviation technology academy

Aviation Campers Experience Aviation Through Young Eagle Flights, Museum Exhibits

Middle School students visited the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum Thursday on a scheduled field trip as part of their participation in the Aviation Technology Academy sponsored by Rankin Technical College.  The week-long camp program offers a series of activities that illustrate career opportunities in the aviation and aerospace industries.  Students touring the museum, located in historic Curtiss-Wright Hangar 2 at St. Louis Downtown Airport, learned about the development of aircraft design over the last century, including pilot training technology from 1940s Link Trainers to a restored F-4 Phantom II jet fighter cockpit.  They examined the structure of a Pietenpol aircraft under restoration, and learned about the mechanics of aircraft powerplants through the use of cutaway engine exhibits.  The highlight of the visit, though, was the opportunity for each student to receive a Young Eagle Flight arranged by EAA Chapter 64, also based at the airport.  In addition to experiencing the sheer enjoyment of flight, the students gained a practical knowledge of aircraft that no doubt will remain with them in the years to come as they make their career choices.

Special thanks to EAA Chapter 64 President Paul Voorhees, Young Eagles Coordinator Bob McDaniel, Young Eagles Ground Operations Coordinator Nick Turk, pilots Jeff Stephenson and Eve Cascella and museum staff for making this Midwest aero experience possible!

The Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum


Students tour a Lockheed Jetstar once owned by Howard Hughes


Students inside the Lockheed Jetstar


Students head out to their Young Eagle Flights


Pilot Bob McDaniel gets ready to taxi out for a flight


Aircraft are readied for their Young Eagle Flights


Pilot Eve Cascella leads students to the aircraft


Pilot Eve Cascella briefs the students before their flight


Pilot Jeff Stephenson briefs students before their flight


Pilot Jeff Stephenson demonstrates the pre-flight inspection


Pilot Jeff Stephenson points out the rudder on the tail


Students are shown the airport’s fire apparatus


Students pose with the F-4 Phantom II jet fighter cockpit


Pietenpol under restoration shows aircraft structure and engine


Pietenpol cockpit


R3350 cutaway under restoration shows working parts


1940s Link Trainers show how pilots learned instrument flight