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EAA AirVenture Today is published by the Experimental Aircraft Association for EAA AirVenture from July 27 - August 3. It is distributed free on the convention grounds as well as other locations in Oshkosh and surrounding communities. Stories and photos are copyrighted 2008 by EAA AirVenture Today and EAA. Reproduction by any means is prohibited without written consent.


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The official daily newspaper of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh

Volume 9, Number 5 July 31, 2008     

Success builds as Build A Plane outlines future plans
By George Wilhelmsen
Two West Side Aviation Academy students at work on a Build A Plane project airplane.
Build A Plane has 80 projects working in the US and two outside the US, including this project in Nigeria.

A program that has its roots in the donation of a derelict Cessna 150 to a high school has developed into a world-class program for introducing our nation’s youth to the joys and job opportunities of aviation. Build A Plane made several announcements at this year’s AirVenture.

The Build A Plane program takes requests from schools around the country and pairs them up with available planes. The aircraft are donated to the schools, which can then use the aircraft and curriculum to help develop and foster their students’ knowledge, interest, and skills in aviation-related topics. At present, the organization has placed 80 aircraft in high schools across the United States, and it even has projects in Nigeria and Bangalore, India.

Cessna has teamed up with Build A Plane and has collaborated with the Department of Energy (DoE) to create an aviation-themed Real World Design Challenge. The program will allow high school students across the country to collaborate online with scientists and engineers from all 17 U.S. DoE laboratories as well as the Oak Ridge National Laboratory to create "greener" aircraft designs. Each teacher who attends and completes the two-day training to learn to use PTC’s Pro/Engineer CAD software receives more than $900,000 worth of free CAD software to use in his or her classroom.

Build A Plane has also teamed up with Glasair and is putting a group of students through its Two Weeks to Taxi factory-build program. The effort is being co-sponsored by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), Garmin, Lycoming, Hartzell, the Thomas Wathen Foundation, Advanced Flight Systems, Aircraft Spruce, Pacific Coast Avionics, and others who will provide the various subsystems and components needed to complete the project. The end result of the project will be the completion of a Glasair Sportsman 2+2 project.

The organization also announced that GAMA is hosting a Build A Plane project at AirVenture. Students from Frankfort High Aviation Academy traveled to AirVenture and are working on the restoration of a classic Aeronca 60-TF during the show. The Aeronca airframe was donated to the Kentucky school courtesy of the Thomas Wathen Foundation. Once the aircraft is restored, it will join another Build A Plane restoration in providing flight training.

Finally, Build A Plane announced a teaming with Snap-on Tools, which will provide, with the assistance of the Professional Aviation Maintenance Association, a core set of tools required for most aviation projects. The tools will be offered at the company’s preferred education pricing.

Build A Plane is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that is seeking other aircraft projects to pair with open requests. For more information or to donate an airplane, visit Build A Plane online at www.BuildAPlane.org or call 920-279-3714.

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