AOPA High School Aviation STEM Symposium

Hosted by UPS

November 5-6, 2018
Louisville Marriott Downtown
Louisville, KY

Register Watch our 2017 Recap View




The AOPA High School Aviation STEM Symposium brings dedicated educators from around the nation for two full days of sharing insights, ideas, and best practices for starting and building aviation STEM programs.

Now in its fourth year, the AOPA High School Aviation STEM Symposium is the ONLY high school event in the nation that specifically targets aviation and aerospace content.

The world will continue to need pilots, aerospace engineers, scientists, technologists, and technicians as we progress into the 21st century. Let’s work together to prepare students for success with 21st-century skills!


  • Speakers EXPERT SPEAKERSLearn from leading edge pioneers in aviation, STEM, and career and technical education communities.
  • Sessions MORE BREAKOUT SESSIONSWith more than 15 sessions, customize your symposium experience for lasting impact.
  • Time TIME FOR YOUNumerous networking opportunities to talk with other passionate, mission-minded educators like you.
  • TOURSNumerous networking opportunities to talk with other passionate, mission-minded educators like you.
  • Explore EXPLOREThere’s lots to see and do, including Churchill Downs, the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the Muhammad Ali Center, the Kentucky Science Center, and more!

Why Attend?

Come learn from experts in aerospace and aviation education, including industry-leading keynotes Gwynne Shotwell, president and chief operating officer of SpaceX and Captain Houston Mills, UPS Global Aviation Strategy and Public Policy Director. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear the latest news from one of the most exciting aerospace companies!

The AOPA High School Aviation STEM Symposium is your chance to get to know the leaders in the field. Our speakers come with a wealth of experience in multiple areas including education and the aviation industry. They will share lessons learned and provide fresh ideas to take back to your classrooms. We’ve added more time for breakout sessions that extend from starting an aviation program all the way to building a flight training program.

The excitement about aviation education from participants at this symposium creates an energized atmosphere you’ll find nowhere else! Join us for two days of breakout sessions, tours of the UPS pilot training facility, Worldport® hub, and UPS Maintenance Hangar – plus, networking opportunities you won’t want to miss.


    This year’s event features an excellent opportunity to learn from Gwynne Shotwell, President and COO of SpaceX and Captain Houston Mills, UPS Global Aviation Strategy and Public Policy Director.


    We’ll focus on topics such as integrating aviation into STEM classes, fostering partnerships, learning how to start an aviation program, and integrating AOPA’s free aviation STEM curriculum into your school.


    Last year’s exhibits were a big success, so we’re adding more exhibitors this year including collegiate aviation programs, industry, and vendors who have materials and supplies to equip your school’s aviation.

    Interested in exhibiting? Download Prospectus


    Great networking opportunities with fellow participants, including educators, administrators, university faculty, and industry leaders.


    Choose one of three exciting tours to learn more about the inner workings of UPS. Get a unique tour of UPS’s Worldport® hub, its largest air facility, processing 5 million packages a day. The tour of UPS’s pilot training center will include an opportunity to fly an Airbus or Boeing simulator. And, the UPS Maintenance Hangar tour will offer a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to maintain UPS’s fleet of over 240 aircraft and keep the airline running smoothly. These experiences are not available to the general public.

    Each tour has limited space, so register early. Learn more.

Attendance Justification Letter Template



  • Monday
  • Tuesday

Monday, November 5, 2018

  • 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.Registration and Breakfast
  • 8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.Opening General Session

    Houston Mills, Global Aviation Strategy & Public Policy Director, UPS
  • 9:45 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.AOPA Resources for You and Your Students.

    We’ll bring you up to date on the latest developments in AOPA’s High School Initiative, including high school aviation STEM curriculum and student flight training scholarships.
  • 10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.Networking Break (Exhibits open)
  • 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.BREAKOUT SESSIONS
  • 11:30 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.Lunch
  • 12:15 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.General Session: Aviation Careers: A place for everyone

    Help your students discover the diverse opportunities available in aviation fields. This session will feature a panel of experts whose career paths have included manned and unmanned flying, airport management, air traffic control, and more.
  • 1:15 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.School Showcase Event
  • 2:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.Networking Break (Exhibits open)
  • 2:15 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.BREAKOUT SESSIONS
  • 3:15 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.Networking Break (Exhibits open)
  • 3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.BREAKOUT SESSIONS
  • 4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.Evening Reception (Exhibits open)

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

  • 8:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.Breakfast (Exhibits open)
  • 8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.Opening General Session

    Gwynne Shotwell, President and COO, SpaceX
  • 9:45 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.Networking Break (Exhibits open)
  • 10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.BREAKOUT SESSIONS
  • 10:45 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.Networking Break (Exhibits open)
  • 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.BREAKOUT SESSIONS
  • 12:00 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.Lunch (Exhibits open until 12:45 pm)
  • 12:45 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.General Session: So, I Started a Program. Now What?

    Learn strategies to engage your school district, community, industry partners, and others who can help support and grow your aviation education program. This panel will feature experts who’ve taken different approaches to deepening the learning experience.
  • 1:45 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.Closing and 2019 Symposium Announcement

*Agenda subject to change. Please check back often for session descriptions and speakers.



  • Sunday
  • Monday

Sunday, November 4, 2018

  • 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.UPS Pilot Training Center Tour
  • 1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.UPS Pilot Training Center Tour
  • 3:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.UPS Pilot Training Center Tour
  • 5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.UPS Pilot Training Center Tour

Monday, November 5, 2018

  • 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.UPS Maintenance Hangar Tour
  • 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.UPS Maintenance Hangar Tour
  • 11:00 p.m. - 2:00 a.m.UPS Worldport® Tour

Get your tickets!


Where to Stay


AOPA has reserved a block of rooms at the Louisville Marriott Downtown from November 3 to 6, 2018 at a group rate*of $167 per night. Participants are responsible to book and pay for their own rooms. Make your reservation early and mention “AOPA 2018 Symposium” to ensure block rate.

The negotiated room rate will be available until Thursday, October 11, or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first.

Complimentary wireless Internet access in all guestrooms and meeting spaces. Click to reserve your room, or call:

Reservations Toll Free: 1-800-266-9432

Reservations Local Phone: 502-627-5045

Be sure to mention your reservation is for “AOPA 2018 Symposium” to receive your group rate.

Symposium Registration

Registration Includes

  • Admission Two-Days Packed with SessionsAdmission to the entire symposium and attendance to all education sessions, networking opportunities, an exclusive tour of the UPS pilot training facility, UPS Worldport ® hub, or the UPS Maintenance Hangar. Tours are limited, so be sure to register early.
  • Networking Evening ReceptionMingle and network with colleagues and meet new people at our Monday evening reception, including cocktails and light hors d’oeuvres. Sponsored by American Airlines.
  • MealsBreakfast and lunch are included on both days of the symposium!


    Through Aug. 31

    Register Now
  • $280

    After Aug. 31


Speakers Coming Soon

Download Sponsor and Exhibitor Prospectus


Sponsors / Exhibitors

Interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at this year’s symposium? We have many options for you! Check out our 2018 AOPA Symposium Prospectus and determine what might be a good fit for your organization.

To become a sponsor, please email us at [email protected]. To register as an exhibitor, click here. Space is limited, so register early to ensure your space.


Host Sponsor



American Airlines
  • California Aeronautical University


Exhibitors Coming Soon

CANCELLATION POLICY: All cancellations are required to be made in writing to [email protected] prior to October 15, 2018 for refunds to be processed. Refunds will not be provided for cancellations received after October 15, 2018.