For a young man who hails from Marine City, Mich., and intends to join a branch of the military, it seems there would be only one logical choice. Not for Patrick Senger, a fifth-year major in aviation technical operations in the WMU College of Aviation. Instead of humming the notes that accompany "From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli," he'll be doing the same for "Off we go, into the wild blue yonder."
Bielat says that, as his years at Portage Central High School were coming to an end in the spring of 2016, Western was the only college to which he applied and the primary reason for that is its College of Aviation, which is close to his Kalamazoo-area home. "It's one of the top flight schools in the country and it all sounded like the perfect opportunity."
Fraternities and sororities often feature "legacy" pledges -- meaning if Dad was a Sigma Sigma or Mom was a Nu Nu, so is an offspring almost automatically. While it was never "automatic," Brooke Semler puts the concept of legacy membership to shame. The College of Aviation junior is a fourth-generation Western Michigan University Bronco. Her parents hang Western diplomas on their wall. So do a set of grandparents. And even "Great Grandma."
"Father Knows Best" was a highly popular sit-com on radio and television in the late 1940s and 1950s. For Raymone "Ray" Hayman, it was "Mom" who knew best as the family's pathfinder. Because of her version of "tough love," Ray was dragooned into attending the renowned Benjamin Oliver Davis Jr. Aerospace Technical High School in his home city of Detroit. As a result, he was pointed toward the WMU College of Aviation and is now six years into what looms as a promising and profitable career in the aviation industry.
Vladislav Robinson wasn't born to fly, but it wasn't a heck of a long time after his birth that he did a lot of flying. At the age of 17 months, "Vlad" made his first flight, departing his birth country of Ukraine. His maiden aviation journey required four flights for the future Bronco to reach his adoptive parents in Port Orange, Fla, the placed he called home until 5th grade when he moved to Steeler Country: Pittsburgh Pa. While this initial flight may have introduced him to higher atmospheric elevations, his true affinity for aviation was nurtured as he grew because his father was a pilot in the U. S. Air Force.
If you think the epitome of college life is shuttering in your dorm playing video games, you don't want Braden "Brady" Wilson as a "roomie." A WMU College of Aviation junior, this "Brady" has bunched together a number of activities, all designed to maximize the enjoyment of this phase of his existence while navigating a course aimed at career success once the higher-education chapter of life ebbs into personal history.
The work-experience section of Lisa Whittaker's resume would choke a paper shredder. Which is why, as a member of the WMU College of Aviation's faculty since 2000, she has taught these courses: aviation safety (her personal favorite), airport administration and finance, introduction to aviation, aerodynamics, introduction to airports, airline flight operations, and airline administration. Her research topics include women’s studies, STEM, maintenance engineering and safety management systems.
Matthew Wietstock is not your typical pilot. His approach to higher education, which initially featured a music-composition major at Western Michigan University, is a bit backward. Double majors in the College of Aviation are not that unusual, but Wietstock's prime path leads to a degree in aviation management and operations and then one in aviation flight science. Peers normally reverse that plan.
Want to learn more about the Air Force ROTC program at Western Michigan University? Come join the conversation on this version of Hangar Talk. Learn why the AFROTC program is a great opportunity, how to get involved and the benefits of taking part of the opportunity. For more information, please check out: https://wmich.edu/aviation/academics/air-force-rotc
Miranda Goodison is a living, breathing example that those field trips in eighth grade to check out potential careers really work. Now nearing sophomore status in the Western Michigan University College of Aviation, she has wanted to become a pilot since she turned 11. That horizon came into focus when, as a Girl Scout, she visited the college's main headquarters at W. K. Kellogg Airport (now Battle Creek Executive Airport at Kellogg Field) in the famed Cereal City just east of Kalamazoo.