Did you know that aviation education is currently available to every high school student in North Dakota?
Though what is available may vary from school to school, every student has the opportunity to enroll in a high school education program through either a class offered in person at their high school, virtually through the Central Region Area Career and Technical Center, or through the North Dakota Center for Distance Education.
We currently have in person instruction offered around the state in the following locations: Bismarck, Jamestown, Kindred, West Fargo, Grand Forks, Minot, and Williston. While in person instruction is the preferred method of delivery, it is exciting that schools who may not be able to offer a class because of a low number of students, do have the availability to collaborate with a distance education provider for this instruction. This allows for around 500 students in North Dakota to learn about the aviation opportunities available, including flying and non-flying career paths.
For schools looking to start an aviation program, even small or rural schools, there are resources available. One such FREE resource is the AOPA High School STEM curriculum: https://youcanfly.aopa.org/high-school/high-school-curriculum. Though many resources exist, AOPA has put ample resources into this curriculum to ensure it remains free and available to schools. Furthermore, the curriculum is designed for any teacher, even those without an aviation background, to effectively teach the curriculum. What this means is any school with a licensed teacher may use the curriculum regardless of the teacher's content background. AOPA provides six different courses for schools to choose from and provides for a potential four year pathway, if the school chooses.
There are many possibilities to gain access to aviation education in your local school. If you would like to help get more opportunities in your local community, I recommend first reaching out to your school to see what opportunities currently exist, and then contacting the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission to see how we can help.
Together, we can help more students see the many opportunities that exist for careers in aviation.