Students continue fight to keep aviation program in the air - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Students continue fight to keep aviation program in the air

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Fitness guru Richard Simmons has joined the crusade to save AU's aviation program. Fitness guru Richard Simmons has joined the crusade to save AU's aviation program.
AUBURN, AL (WTVM) -

Student leaders of Auburn's Aviation Management program met with the Provost and Dean of the college Monday to discuss the future of the program.

"To be honest it's kind of in their hands right now with their supposed to do, however, Dean Hardgrave also has a meeting coming up on May 6 with the Aviation Management Advisory Board and we're to get answers from that meeting," explains AU Aviation student, David Hoebelheinrich.

Over the past month, students, alumni, and even celebrities have supported the fight to save the program.

After a flight with an Auburn alumni pilot, exercise guru Richard Simmons submitted a video defending the world-renowned curriculum.

However, with no professors left and accreditation pending, plans have not been set by AU officials to keep the program.

"They are not legally obligated to graduate them with accreditation, which is going to severely hinder their ability to look for jobs and get internships," says Auburn Aviation student Michael Pfieffer.  

At Monday's grand opening of GE's new jet engine components factory in Auburn, Governor Robert Bentley said as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Auburn University, his team will have to look into the problem.

"I think that's very important and I know jobs maybe difficult right now, but when the economy picks back up and we continue to have expansions all over the country, which will happen, jobs will be available because we want them to say in Alabama," explains Bentley.

As for Hoebelheinrich, being a part of the state's only aviation program in an aviation declared state just doesn't make sense.

"They're going to need airport managers, they're going to need us and to get rid of the last aviation program we have in Alabama just doesn't make sense."

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