The Learn to Fly Center at EAA AirVenture will expand beyond its traditional mission of welcoming new participants to the world of flight, as a pilot proficiency project will be added to the 2012 offerings. The Learn to Fly Center, which is staffed with experienced flight instructors and aviators, is located across from the EAA Welcome Center at the center of the AirVenture grounds.
The Pilot Proficiency Project is a joint initiative by EAA, the National Association of Flight Instructors (NAFI), and the Society of Aviation and Flight Educators (SAFE). It will feature pilot-targeted forums and simulator training sessions that address key aviation safety issues such as angle of attack awareness, type-specific aircraft issues, glass panels, aeronautical decision making, and much more.
"The Learn to Fly Center at AirVenture always welcomes people to discover flight as we grow participation in aviation, but we're also focusing on keeping today's pilots safe and making them better aviators," said Charlie Becker, EAA's member products manager. "Presentations specifically aimed at improving pilot safety and simulators with trained instructors on hand will be a great complement to our forums."
The AirVenture schedule will include forums at the Learn to Fly Center between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. each day, followed by 20-minute simulator training sessions in the Redbird FMX and Cross Trainer simulators. Up to 21 simulator slots are available each day, where participating pilots will work with instructors in a number of pre-programmed scenarios that include engine failure on takeoff, overshoots from base leg to final approach, and approaches to minimums with a tailwind.
Among the presenters are Hobie Tomlinson, this year's National Flight Instructor of the Year, as well as previous recipients including Jeff Edwards, Rich Stowell, and Doug Stewart. Pilot Proficiency Projects forums and simulator training participants will be eligible for FAA WINGS credits.
"We appreciate the members of SAFE and NAFI for making these sessions possible," Becker said. "The 'Stronger Together' concept between aviation groups is not only effective in government advocacy, but also in raising safety awareness and training among all aviators."