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Students protest decision to close DWC flight school

Braving pouring rain and a cold wind in New Hampshire, 40 students and alumni turned out March 30 to protest the decision to ground the Daniel Webster College (DWC) flight operations major. The protest was the latest in a series of public displays of support for the program, and comes a week after DWC’s owner, ITT Educational Services, publicly announced its intent to close the program.

Marcia Wescott, a DWC alumna who helped organize the protest, said the range of participants was great. There were current flight students, alumni, and even DWC students from unrelated majors, she said. Wescott said that everyone at the school was wearing the school colors in support of the event. “Even if they couldn’t attend, they were there with us in spirit.”

Later in the day, about a dozen protestors were allowed to join 15 other students and faculty at a meeting with the school’s interim president, Nadine Dowling. But far from an opportunity to openly discuss the decision to close the flight program, said Wescott, the meeting consisted of questions read by a moderator in connection with Dowling’s application to become the permanent president.

Protestors chose Tuesday because ITT President Kevin Modany was reportedly planning to come to campus for interviews related to the open position. However, Modany chose to instead meet at a local hotel, a point which Wescott says will be brought up in a phone call later this week with the student senate president.

Ian J. Twombly

Ian J. Twombly

Ian J. Twombly is senior content producer for AOPA Media.

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