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Jaguars Foundation $10,000 grant funds scholarships for Davis Aviation Center student veterans’ flight fees

A $10,000 grant award announced by the Jaguars Foundation furthers the Jacksonville University Davis Aviation Center’s role as a premier flight-training program in the region by providing scholarships to eligible veterans seeking to obtain their initial pilot license. DSC_1179

The program is supported by the Jaguars Foundation on behalf of the City of Jacksonville Veterans Resource and Reintegration Center. JU, one of America’s most military-friendly schools, will provide matching funds to enable two or more scholarships of up to $10,000 to be awarded to eligible veterans for the 2014-15 academic year.

JU Mark Willette
Capt. Mark Willette, JU Associate Director of Aeronautics

Many of our nation’s veterans have dreamed of becoming pilots. In volunteering to defend our nation, they have earned the privilege and deserve the opportunity to make their personal dreams come true,” said Capt. Mark Willette, JU Associate Director of Aeronautics. “This award will help bridge the funding gap that sometimes cannot be overcome through VA benefits alone, and puts in place a ‘safety net’ that will give veterans studying aviation at Jacksonville University a fighting chance to succeed without the added pressure of a financial shortfall.”

For student veterans pursuing a career in aviation, the Post 9/11 GI Bill covers only the cost of flight school tuition. Flight fees are not covered, and veterans must assume the $10,000 cost, and sometimes more, out of their own pockets.

The Davis Aviation Center’s Aviation Management & Flight Operations (AVO) and Aviation Management (AVM) programs require students to earn their private pilot license, which typically requires 50 hours of logged flight time. All JU aviation students learn to pilot an aircraft and hone their airmanship skills at the Aerosim Flight Academy housed at Jacksonville Executive at Craig Airport (JAXEX).

The scholarships from the Jaguars Foundation, in partnership with the City of Jacksonville, Deutsche Bank and JU, will support up to 50 flight hours for each recipient.

More information about the program can be obtained by calling (904) 256-7434 or e-mailing mwillet@ju.edu. To donate to the JU aviation scholarship matching fund, contact Donna Morrow, Director of Planned Giving, at dmorrow1@ju.edu or (904) 256-7928.