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Aviation Day at Western Michigan University’s College of Aviation

Pentastar Aviation to host aviation school-to-career program

Waterford, Mich. – A special local flight around the Pontiac area, discussions with aviation professionals, and a presentation from a U.S. Air Force legend are just some of the planned activities for Aviation Day, a school-to-career program hosted by Pentastar Aviation. Pentastar has partnered with Western Michigan University’s College of Aviation to host about 50 students from Davis Aerospace Technical High School in Detroit, Mich. on Wednesday, January 13, 2010.

Rick Maloney, president and CEO of Pentastar Aviation and former dean of WMU’s College of Aviation, brought his passion for aviation education to Pentastar in 2007. Since then, the company has been committed to bringing high quality educational programming to the local community.

“We have impressive operations, an incredible facility and a staff of employees that understand the importance of inspiring students with career goals in the field of aviation,” Maloney said. “Our goal is to equip these students with an increased knowledge of a variety of career paths in aviation, help them understand the education they will need to achieve their goals and then support them as they pursue those goals.”

Students will have the opportunity to attend presentations by aviation professionals, current and former WMU College of Aviation students and ask questions about the details of aviation education and careers.

“We want to pave the way for students from Davis to attend Western’s College of Aviation and get them excited about the next step in their education,” said Captain Dave Powell, dean of WMU’s College of Aviation. “Our graduates and current students – some of whom previously attended Davis – will paint a picture for these students of what it is really like to go through classes and flight training at the next level.”

Keynote speaker, Col. Harry T. Stewart, USAF, Ret. will also share his inspiring story. One of the original Tuskegee Airmen, Col. Stewart had to overcome many challenges to realize his dreams. This will be his second appearance at Pentastar to present during a school-to-career program.

For many students, a flight around the Pontiac area will be the highlight of the program. Flight instructors from WMU’s College of Aviation will fly several aircraft to Pentastar, where they will take students on 20 to 30-minute flights (weather permitting).

Pentastar’s partnership with the College of Aviation at WMU is growing after a donation of funds and equipment totalling more than $40,000 in October 2009.

“I believe the College of Aviation at Western is one of the premier programs in the United States,” Maloney said. “Pentastar’s commitment to supporting the College is based on the mutual standard of excellence shared by our organizations.”

For more than 45 years, Pentastar Aviation has been a leader in business aviation industry. Pentastar provides award-winning aircraft maintenance, aircraft management services, aircraft charter, avionics design/install/repair and knowledgeable aviation advisors. Their repair station received Airframe Class 3 and 4 Ratings from the Federal Aviation Administration in January 2009. Pentastar’s world class FBOs provide exceptional customer service and amenities. The KPTK location was voted the No. 1 FBO in the nation in 2008.

The College of Aviation boasts enrollment of nearly 700 students in three programs – Aviation Maintenance Technology, Aviation Science and Administration and Aviation Flight Science. The college’s mission is to prepare leaders who are sought after by the aerospace industry and to engage in meaningful research that advances the knowledge base. The college’s vision is to be the premier aerospace education and research institution in a diverse global society. Founded in 1939, the college has operated since 1997 from the W.K. Kellogg Airfield in Battle Creek.