October 16, 2013

Media Advisory – American Airlines Career Day

Southern Illinois University Carbondale will host 115 Chicago-area high school and community college students during the ninth annual American Airlines-SIU Carbondale Aviation Career Day on Saturday, Oct. 19.

The students will learn more about SIU’s Aviation Management and Flight and Aviation Technologies programs and talk with American Airlines personnel. The bulk of activity will take place at the Transportation Education Center at Southern Illinois Airport.

Reporters, photographers and camera crews are welcome to attend the event, which takes place during Homecoming weekend, and interview students, faculty and American Airlines personnel.  An optimum time for video and photos will be when the plane lands at Southern Illinois Airport at approximately 8:50 a.m.

Aviation career days also take place each spring and summer. SIU Carbondale is the only aviation program that works with major airlines to fly students to campus for aviation career day events. For David NewMyer, chair of the Department of Aviation Management and Flight, the event is significant in several ways.

“The key purpose of the day is to provide a great experience to 115 or so visiting high school and community college students as they visit the Transportation Education Center, the Aviation Technologies Building and the Rotorcraft Hangar at Southern Illinois Airport.  Part of that great experience for 60 to 70 of the visiting students will be flying them on an aerial tour of Southern Illinois in one of our SIU flight training aircraft.”

NewMyer also enjoys the opportunity to visit with SIU aviation alumni who volunteer their time for the event.

“I had many of them as students when they studied here at SIU as undergraduates and it is so great to see them again, in their roles as American Airlines pilots, aviation technicians, aviation managers, and flight attendants.  This is one of those really ‘fun days’ of the year for me.”

The airline personnel include pilots, aircraft maintenance and airline management personnel, including virtually all the flight and cabin crew. Aviation alumni Chris Wood and Tom Meagher are captain and first officer, respectively.

The itinerary for the day incudes:

  • 9 a.m. -- Group photo next to the MD-80 aircraft.
  • 9:15 to 11:45 a.m. -- Airport and SIU Aviation facility tours, introductory flights.
  • 11:45 to 1:45 p.m. -- Aviation careers briefing featuring American Airlines personnel; TEC multi-purpose room A, located on south end of TEC.
  • 2 to 3:15 p.m. -- Walking tour of SIU Carbondale campus, including the Student Recreation Center, Student Center and Saluki Stadium.
  • 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. -- Return to Southern Illinois Airport to board aircraft for return flight to Chicago.

For more information on the event, contact Lori Robertson at 618/453-8898 or by email at lrobertson@aviation.siu.edu.