MELBOURNE, FLA. — Florida Tech will add multiple aircraft to the fleet at FIT Aviation thanks to a $500,000 grant from the Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust, a longtime university supporter instrumental in the development of the school’s renowned aviation training programs.
The school will purchase several Piper Warrior airplanes, adding to a fleet of nearly three dozen Piper aircraft. The new airplanes will allow FIT Aviation to increase its flight training capacity to better serve the more than 500 current and future flight students utilizing these resources.
“The Buehler grant has been instrumental in allowing FIT Aviation to continue to expand and to serve the needs of future pilots,” said John Deaton, interim dean and professor at the College of Aeronautics. “We thank the Trust and those who oversee it for their continued support of Florida Tech and our aviation programs.”
The Buehler Trust, with a mission to “provide funding to institutions, organizations, and foundations that carry forward the research and development of new and improved aircraft and promote the field of aviation science and technology,” has for years helped keep Florida Tech at the forefront of aeronautics and aviation education.
It gave $3.7 million towards the establishment of the Emil Buehler Center for Aviation Training and Research, which opened in 2009, and the flight test engineering program. The Trust has helped fund the purchase of cutting-edge flight simulators and, more recently, helped Florida Tech become the first American university to own and fly an electric plane.
“Florida Tech is honored by the ongoing support and partnership with the Buehler Trust,” noted Gary Grant, senior vice president for development. “This powerful union continues to help us train the best pilots throughout the world.”
The Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust was established in 1984 pursuant to the last will and testament of Emil Buehler, an aviation visionary, architect and engineer who had a profound, lifelong interest in aeronautical science.