Airbus is furthering its global partnership with academia by recently donating an A320 fixed base simulator to the Prescott, Arizona campus of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU). The donation makes ERAU the first and only university in North and South America to offer practical education using Airbus fly-by-wire technology.
At the unveiling ceremony, instructors demonstrated the capabilities of the simulator, which ERAU is using for senior-level advanced flight deck education. "The simulator will help the university achieve its goal of preparing students for the technical environment they will work within, as well as ensure they are bilingual when they graduate - they will speak Airbus and Boeing," explained Larry Rockliff, vice president of training, Airbus North America.
Dan Carrell, Chancellor of Embry-Riddle's Prescott campus, said the university was thrilled to receive the generous donation from Airbus. "This addition to our fleet will provide students with an excellent training tool that will greatly enhance their employment options upon graduation," he said.
Sean Jeralds, Chair of Embry-Riddle's Flight Training Centre in Prescott, added: "Airbus makes up roughly half of the worldâ€™s jet fleet, so it's highly likely that a student will sit in the right seat some time in his or her career."
Airbus has a longstanding relationship with ERAU, which has campuses in Arizona and Florida, and is the world's largest, fully accredited university specialising in aviation and aerospace. Its graduates account for one in four commercial pilots in North America.
Demand for trained aviation professionals is set to increase in the coming years. "Various studies have concluded that we are on the threshold of a global shortage of qualified pilots, engineers and mechanics," Rockliff said. "Airbus is being proactive in developing working relationships with universities and colleges around the world."