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MICHIGAN: Dick DeVos’ aviation charter school partners with college for students to earn early credits

NorthwesternMichiganGRAND RAPIDS, MI – West Michigan Aviation Academy has entered into an agreement with Northwestern Michigan College that will allow its graduates to receive eight credits upon enrollment at the college.

The credits would validate successful completion of the curriculum equivalent of NMC’s private pilot ground school and aviation maintenance courses while enrolled at the aviation charter high school, located on the Gerald R. Ford International Airport.

Aaron Cook, NMC director of aviation, said the agreement announced Tuesday, Jan. 14, means that the students will save time and money.

“It accelerates their movement through college,” he said. “What we’re really excited about is having a local school that’s preparing students for the aviation world.”

WMAA, founded in 2010 by businessman and philanthropist Dick DeVos, will graduate its first class of 75 students this spring.

“We have students in the pipeline, and we are just very grateful to Aaron and the college for working with us,” Pat Cwayna, CEO of WMAA. “The articulation agreement will just make it more inviting for our students to seriously consider NMC as their next step.”

The school serves 412 students in grades nine to 12. Design and preconstruction are underway for Phase IV for the school. The $2 million expansion will provide approximately 15,000 square feet of additional space for students, which will allow the school to serve a junior and senior class of up to 600 students total.

The new space will feature additional classrooms, laboratories, collaborative space for the students, and an airplane hangar. Phase III, which was completed in 2012, provided an extra 42,000 square feet to accommodate the junior class.

The school’s curriculum includes core subjects, while focusing on students with a passion for aviation and/or an interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The school draws students from throughout West Michigan.

Subsequent to an NMC degree, Cook said students who desire to take their aviation education even further can pursue a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an aviation concentration at both Davenport and Ferris State universities through NMC’s University Center in Traverse City.

Source:  MLive – by Monica Scott

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This entry was posted on January 16, 2014 by in Charter Schools, Michigan, States.

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