Andrew Harrison WDEF
What’s Right With Our Schools: Brainerd Future Ready Institute of Aviation
December 7, 2020
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  • CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF) – A Brainerd High School student is flying high!  Kobe Rivers recently completed his first solo flight. He’s on course to earn his Private Pilot’s Certificate by the end of the school year. Brainerd’s Future Ready Institute of Aviation is a shining example of “What’s Right With Our Schools.”

    Taylor Neeman is the President and Director of Operations for Crystal Air. His organization awarded Kobe with its scholarship award.

    Neeman says, “Thankful for the opportunity to be able to present a scholarship to Kobe Rivers for his private pilot certificate. Crystal Air strives to instill love of and passion for aviation in the next generation.”

    He adds, “We teach people to fly every day, but especially folks that may not have been exposed to aviation this is an awesome opportunity.”

    Kobe Rivers is making the most of that opportunity.

    He says, “I wanted to become a pilot because I wanted to be different.  You know how everybody coming out of different neighborhoods wants to be an NBA player, NFL player and all that. I think aviation will take me a little bit farther. Aviation is beautiful. It’s some thing. It’s a beautiful thing.”

    Neeman adds, “We also do one on one ground school with a student. They come in and we basically showed them how to pre-flight the airplane. We go out and do fundamentals. We go fly various maneuvers; various emergency procedures. And that’s where he is at right now, doing all those, mastering all those. And then he is moving on now on to be able to go from an airport to another airport. So we will fly off with him to Knoxville, to middle Tennessee, somewhere probably Shelbyville or something like that. And then he will go back to those by him self. And then he preps for his check ride. And there is a written test that he will have to take prior to all this and then he will, his check ride is his graduation from the FAA.”

    Jeannette Tippett, is the Future Ready Institute Coach at Brainerd.

    She concludes, “We are the only one in Hamilton county that has an aviation program. And I would say we have also expanded the program just to let the students know that maybe you don’t want to be a pilot but you want to have a career in aviation. We have a mechanics component and we also have supply chain management that we just add this year. So the students will be able to explore many different careers within the aviation field.”