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USU Aviation Program Welcomes Gift -- and Students -- From Saudi Airlines

Thursday, Jun. 18, 2015

USU aviation students with a Boeing airplane model

Students from Saudi Arabia gather around a model Boeing airplane that was a gift from Saudi Airlines to USU's School of Applied Sciences, Technology and Education and its Aviation Technology Program.

USU aviation students from Saudi Arabia

The Saudi students enrolled at USU after Saudi Airlines looked for a flight program that would help the airline ensure a cadre of well-trained future pilots.

Utah State University’s Aviation Technology facilities at the Logan-Cache Airport now proudly display a model Boeing airplane. The plane is a gift from Saudi Airlines in recognition of the flight program that is helping the airline ensure a cadre of well-trained future pilots and adding a broader, international perspective to the university’s professional pilot program.

Three years ago, Saudi Airlines was looking for a reputable flight program where it could send students for training in the United States. After a site visit from a Saudi Airlines pilot, the first round of students arrived in Logan the next semester to begin classes. Since the first students started in 2012, the number of Saudi flight students has grown to 19, and more apply every year to begin courses in the USU School of Applied Sciences, Technology and Education and with USU’s Intensive English Language Institute.

“There are only a handful of pilots with bachelor’s degrees at the present time, and as the industry expands, additional management and leadership are desperately needed,” said assistant professor Andreas Wesemann. “The airline knows that in addition to their flight training, these students are getting tremendous language immersion and an education that will prepare these young pilots for future leadership in their organization.”

The airplane model was given to the university following a visit from Saudi Airlines officials who were in Logan to evaluate the students’ experiences and arrange a continued relationship with USU’s aviation programs.

“We look forward to expanding our international outreach in the aviation program,” said Wesemann. “Saudi Airlines stands as an example of international cooperation, achievement and success. Although the airline no longer sponsors students, and they apply on their own, this program is prepared for the future. We’re building bridges across the globe not only between nations, but between individuals.”

Department Head Bruce Miller said the program is grateful for the gift and the model is displayed where students see it regularly in the foyer of USU’s flight operations building. He added that that the mix of international students and those from the United States help all students and the faculty to develop a more global perspective.

“The Boeing aircraft model will inspire all of our students to master their skills and prepare for the bright futures ahead of them,” Wesemann added.

Related links:

Contact: Bruce Miller, 435-2232,

Writer: Lynnette Harris, 435-798-2189,

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