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Old 07-18-2011, 10:00 AM   #1  
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Default Uni. of Illinois Aviation program closed

University of Illinois to close aviation program - chicagotribune.com

By Jodi S. Cohen Tribune reporter 4:38 p.m. CDT, July 17, 2011

University of Illinois officials have decided to shut down its Institute of Aviation after 50 years, pending approval by university trustees this week.


The program, at the university's Urbana-Champaign campus, has fewer students than any other program on campus. It came under review last year as the university looked at ways to cut costs. Some had argued to keep the unique program, and the Faculty Senate voted 57-54 this year against cutting it.


The proposal before trustees says the institute should be closed and its undergraduate programs discontinued "because of its high cost, declining enrollments, adverse impact on the campus academic profile, and the relative weakness of the Institute's connection to the central mission of the campus."


The program trains and certified pilots and offers degrees in aviation human factors, a psychology-based discipline that focuses on improving flight safety. That bachelor's program would be eliminated, but the university is looking at ways to make flight training available to students, possibly through a community college.


The institute wouldn't close until current students can complete their studies, likely at the end of the 2013-2014 school year.
After a decade of enrollment declines, only 34 freshmen started the program last fall. Students in the program consistently have among the lowest ACT scores and high school class ranks on campus, officials said.
Officials have estimated that closing the program would save at least $500,000 a year.
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Old 07-18-2011, 10:10 AM   #2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmaviator View Post
After a decade of enrollment declines, only 34 freshmen started the program last fall. Students in the program consistently have among the lowest ACT scores and high school class ranks on campus, officials said.

OUCH !!!!

I guess that's who's attracted to low pay, future furloughs, long hours, away from home work !!!
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:46 AM   #3  
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I really doubt that fact about the ACT. I know a lot of people in the U of I flight program, and they are all pretty smart. That might just be something like they have a average of 29, and the University's is 30. It feels like U of I is just making up excuses to get them out of there. A really poor choice in my opinion...
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:58 AM   #4  
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I work at the Institute of Aviation, and it has NOT been closed. There is a vote by the BoT on Thursday about a proposal to close it but as of now, nothing has happened. The BoT vote is not just a "Formality." There is a lot of resistance to this vote, contrary to what the Chancellor and Provost say. This proposal is going to the BoT WITHOUT the support of the Urbana/Champaign senate, who voted it down.

Great reporting Trib... got to love when news agencies do things like this.

If I could, I will direct anyone with questions to this site
Save the Institute of Aviation - Home Page
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Old 07-18-2011, 12:05 PM   #5  
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"Great reporting Trib... got to love when news agencies do things like this."

What else would you expect from the media they only want news headlines and dont care about the facts.
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Old 07-18-2011, 06:07 PM   #6  
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It's not officially closed... yet. Just another attempt for certain university officials to 'will it away' by saying its already gone.

As for the low ACT's and class ranks: compared to the rest of the university where you need to have close or above 30 and top 5% class rank to get admitted it is low. But I'm betting scores/ranks are still a lot higher than many programs at other universities.

Back when I was an engineering major at U of I, word on the street was if you couldn't get into engineering (the hardest school to get into there) you would apply into aviation or the Ag school to get into the university, then take engineering classes and transfer over to engineering. I think people trying to do that gave the Institute of Aviation a bad name. (just IMO)
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Old 07-21-2011, 03:36 PM   #7  
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Well I can confirm today that it was indeed voted to close the Institute of Aviation, an over 65 year old aviation program. I could spend hours and hours here explaining the lunacy and ignorance of this decision but honestly don't feel like it. I just hope everyone reads articles very carefully and sees that this is a major loss to the Aviation community. As with most major decisions, the circumstances surrounding them are extremely complicated.

More info here
Save the Institute of Aviation - Home Page
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