Alumni Blog

Bronson Barth Keeps his Eyes on the Sky in Louisville

Posted by Matthew Bila on
Kentucky is famous for its bourbon distilleries, bluegrass music, a certain Colonel who made chicken “finger licking good,” and horse racing. In the state are the city of Louisville and the Louisville International Airport, which was chosen in 2005 as the UPS heavy airfreight hub and a 235-foot air traffic control tower. Climbing the 22 stories on a regular basis is Bronson Barth, Western Michigan University alumni, Air Traffic Controller and aviation enthusiast.

Aviation Articulation: The Birth of the Junior Flight Team Program

Posted by Matthew Bila on
Competition has a way of motivating people. From Pop Warner football to the National Spelling Bee, the thrill of going head to head against a peer has always roused individuals to be their best. In collegiate aviation, the National Intercollegiate Flying Association has had the same impact in the aviation industry. The competitive nature of the NIFA SAFECON events has elevated aviation professionals for nearly 100 years.

The Lechota Legacy - Tom and Tim Take Off with Aviation

Posted by Matthew Bila on

People often asked Hank Williams Jr. why he did certain things -- a lot of them bad. In song and verse, Hank provided one of his trademarked replies, saying he was simply carrying on the “family tradition.”

Marcus Williams: From Seattle to Supersonic (Almost!)

Posted by Matthew Bila on
Growing up in the northwest section of the United States, several things are hard to ignore: the Seattle Seahawks, Starbucks Coffee, Microsoft, the birthplace of Grunge and Boeing. For Marcus Williams the influence of the aerospace giant would have a profound effect on his upbringing, leading him to the place he is today.

State of the WMU College of Aviation - 2015

Posted by Matthew Bila on

Happy New Year, although a bit late, to our aviation family and friends. I’ve got some really exciting updates to share with you and welcome any feedback or conversations you might like to have.

75 Years of Aviation Education - A WMU Celebration

Posted by Matthew Bila on

Seventy-five years of aviation at Western Michigan University and what the next quarter of a century will bring was celebrated Oct. 24 in Battle Creek. As Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons said in that memorable song, “Oh, what a night” and what a night it turned out to be.

From Rockford to Republic - Marty Coaker's Aviation Journey

Posted by Matthew Bila on

Marty Coaker grew up in Rockford, MI.  Aviation was in his blood and he wanted to transcend the confines of gravity.  According to Coaker, “My parents say that it’s (aviation) always been something that I wanted.  As long as I can remember, flying has been my goal.”

"Eaggles" Land his "Field" of Dreams

Posted by Matthew Bila on
Captain Dave Powell, dean of the College of Aviation, is often quoted as saying, “Sometimes it’s better to be lucky, than good.” Very often, we have the best of intentions; going into something with a keen sense of where we are heading. However, it is common to experience some turbulence, or other life-changing event, resulting in rerouting our plans. Sean Egglesfield was both good and lucky.

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