ACE academy accepting applications for 3-day program

Navigating small airplanes, controlling air traffic and exploring Blackhawk helicopters are all part of the Aviation Career Exploration (ACE) Academy, June 20-22, hosted by the Idaho Transportation Department’s Division of Aeronautics.

Teenagers will have the opportunity to participate in the academy, which is open to high school students ages 14-18. Applications must be postmarked by May 1. Extensions may be available upon request. Enrollment is limited to 30 participants.

"Without fail, the students characterize their time here as well spent and describe the academy as absolutely one event that they will not soon forget," said Frank Lester with ITD’s Division of Aeronautics. "They arrive hesitant and a bit unsure, but leave excited about opening new doors, making new contacts and meeting new friends."

Teenagers participating in the academy will experience a variety of activities that provide social experiences and learning opportunities. During the four-day academy, students will hear from experts in various aviation-related fields, as well as representatives of regional and national aeronautical schools. Tours of the Boise Airport, local aviation businesses and flight operations, the Idaho Army and Air National Guard and Mountain Home Air Force Base are also scheduled.

"We want to whet their appetite and motivate them to look beyond the ordinary," Lester said. "It is their opportunity to see some of the many exciting careers that aviation has to offer, whether on the ground, in the air or out in space."

The academy is capped off with flights to nearby airports, such as Idaho City or Garden Valley. Each student has the opportunity to experience a flight under the guidance of a veteran pilot. Upon return to the Treasure Valley, students will tour the Warhawk Air Museum in Nampa.

A $60 registration fee is due upon a student's acceptance to the academy. Scholarship assistance is available. A limited number of host families are also available for students attending from outside the Treasure Valley.

The event is sponsored by the Division of Aeronautics, Federal Aviation Administration, Idaho Ninety-Nines, Warhawk Air Museum, Lynn Clark Memorial, Idaho Business Aviation Association, Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 103, Idaho Aviation Hall of Fame and Idaho Aviation Association.

For more information, call the Division of Aeronautics at (208) 334-8775, or visit its Web site at then click on Aeronautics, Calendar of Events, and “Get the Application” under ACE Academy.

Published 4-22-2011