MELBOURNE, FLA. — Florida Institute of Technology is pioneering new partnerships aimed at enhancing its role as an international leader for flight training.
The university’s flight training organization, FIT Aviation, has earned authorization from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to become the first Approved Training Organization (ATO) to achieve compliance under new European standards.
“This gives us the authority to provide flight training towards EASA pilot certificates and ratings,” explained Ken Stackpoole, Florida Tech vice president for aviation programs. “Florida Tech is the first university with an independently approved EASA ATO certification in the United States. This is important because the European airlines operating the European, Middle East and Asiatic routes in many cases require EASA pilot certification to pilot their airliners. All three of those markets are rapidly expanding, and Florida Tech is excited to be part of this new endeavor.”
Stackpoole said Airbus heard of Florida Tech’s progress towards gaining EASA ATO authorization and asked to visit the campus and flight training operation.
“Airbus and Florida Tech are working hand-in-hand to create a training solution that will appeal to Airbus’ customers,” Stackpoole said. “Florida Tech’s expertise and new EASA certification were key in the discussions with Airbus.”
Florida Tech is currently in a contract with Turkish Airlines to train Turkish cadets to receive an Airbus A320 type rating. Turkish Airlines is one of Airbus’ largest customers.
“Florida Tech is pleased to be on the leading edge of these developments with EASA and Airbus,” said Anthony J. Catanese, Florida Tech president and CEO. “We are excited to be a unifying force in the aviation industry, with the goal of offering the best aviation training programs possible to a range of clients from around the world.”