DURANT, Okla. – The Southeastern Oklahoma State University aviation program has a long and proud history of excellence.
A new chapter was added to this history last week when the Southeastern Flight Team was crowned champions of the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) Region VI competition. Southeastern, which hosted the event, placed first overall, as well as in both the ground and flying events.
The 13-member team now advances to national competition, scheduled for May 6-11 at The Ohio State University.
May 6-11 at The Ohio State University.
“This is a great accomplishment for Southeastern,’’ said Southeastern president Larry Minks. “Our aviation sciences institute is to be congratulated for putting together a first-class event to make the city and University proud. And the results demonstrate the quality of programs we have in place.’’
Dr. David Conway serves as director of the Southeastern Aviation Sciences Institute.
“I am extremely proud of the SE Flight Team –- their hard work and dedication resulted in winning first place as well as being named Region VI Champions,’’ Conway said. “Congratulations to all the team members, professor George Jacox (flight team advisor), professor Kyle Thomas (Region VI competition coordinator), and Amanda Steele (Region VI President).’’
Team members are Jordan Powell (captain), Ping Cheng, Ryan Gornto, Scott Sundstrom, Robert Jacobs (captain), Nathan Alcantara, Douglas Cobb, Alec Maloy, Nikola Topalovic, Michael Odea (captain), Joshua Ashcraft, Greg Eichten, and David Robinson.
“This was such an amazing week for the Southeastern Aviation Sciences Institute,’’ said Kyle Thomas. “What a great group of young men. Thanks to all who made this week possible.”
Added George Jacox: “This group of students worked very hard and it paid off for them. We look forward to competing in nationals next spring.’’
All flying events and Aircraft Preflight Inspection were held at Eaker Field; the remaining ground events were on the Southeastern campus.
Flying Events were Power Off Landing, Short Field Approach and Landing, Navigation, Message Drop, IFR Precision Flight, and IFR Simulated Flight. Ground Events included Computer Accuracy, Ground Trainer, Aircraft Preflight Inspection, Aircraft Recognition, Simulated Comprehensive Aircraft Navigation (SCAN), and Electronic Flight Computer.
On Friday, Oct. 12, the NIFA Region VI awards banquet was held in the Choctaw Resort Conference Center ballroom. Guest speaker was James Hanny, first aviation graduate from Southeastern (’68) and a Distinguished Alumnus of the University. Hanny is also a former president of the Southeastern Alumni Association.
In the overall competition, Southeastern took first place with 543 points. Kansas State University-Salina was the runner-up with 426 points, University of Nebraska-Omaha third with 380, University of Oklahoma fourth with 320, University of Central Missouri fifth with 290, Parks College of St. Louis University sixth with 232, Oklahoma State University seventh with 225, and Spartan College of Aeronautics eighth with 111.
In the flight events, Southeastern claimed first place with 277 points, edging KSU-Salina with 276. Nebraska-Omaha was third with 241 points, University of Oklahoma fourth with 216, Central Missouri fifth with 161, Oklahoma State sixth with 136, Parks College-St. Louis University seventh with 127, and Spartan College eighth with 36.
Southeastern finished first in the ground events with 266 points. KSU-Salina was second with 150 points, Nebraska-Omaha third with 139, Central Missouri fourth with 129, Parks College-St. Louis University fifth with 105, University of Oklahoma sixth with 104, Oklahoma State seventh with 89, and Spartan College eighth with 75.