Delta Air Lines and Auburn University unveiled and dedicated the college’s new $6.2 million aviation education building to students, faculty, and the public Nov. 16.
Plans for the 23,000-square-foot building at Auburn University Regional Airport were announced in 2017. The facility has pilot debriefing rooms, simulator space, and enhanced classrooms. One of the highlights is an Airbus 320 commercial airline simulator.
The airline previously selected Auburn as one of the initial eight universities to take part in the company’s Propel Pilot Career Path Program that helps to “identify, select and develop the next generation of pilots,” a news release noted.
Auburn University President Steven Leath said the career pathway program “places Auburn’s exceptional students in the aviation industry pipeline, helping to ensure the skies are safe and reliable.”
Auburn Airport and Aviation Center Director Bill Hutto told the Opelika-Auburn News that the new facility was “truly a dream come true.” He complimented the Atlanta-based airline for its support and said the training facility was something the university program always wanted but would not have come to fruition “without Delta Air Lines stepping up.” He added that he expected the state-of-the-art hub would play a significant role in “transforming lives and inspiring the next generation of pilots.”
Auburn has been actively involved in aviation education since 1941, and the regional airport is home to the War Eagle Flying Team. The college’s FAA-approved Part 141 flight school and pipeline programs help students develop career paths to regional air carriers, major airlines, and the aerospace industry. The university also reaches out to youths interested in aviation by hosting high school summer camps for aspiring aviators.