Each year, the AOPA Foundation 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.
This is the ONLY high school symposium in the nation that specifically targets aviation and aerospace content.
Pilots, drone operators, aerospace engineers, scientists, technologists, and technicians will always be in demand. Despite the impact of the pandemic, forecasts continue to project shortfalls over the next twenty years as a result of an aging workforce.
The AOPA Foundation High School Aviation STEM Symposium is an excellent opportunity for educators and administrators to discover how they can prepare students for success in these exciting and well-paying careers.
Learn from the experts in aviation education. Join us for two full days of breakout sessions, industry tours, and networking opportunities you will not want to miss.
The AOPA Foundation 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 education, aviation, aerospace, and more. They will share lessons learned and provide fresh ideas to take back to your classrooms. Breakout sessions are designed to help you get the most out of your experience, whether you’re interested in starting an aviation program, adding aviation content to STEM classes, or enhancing an existing aviation initiative at your school.
What is the quickest way for a high school student to earn a seat on the flight deck of an airliner? Join representatives from three airline cadet programs—American Airlines Cadet Academy, Southwest Airlines Destination 225°, and United Airlines Aviate Academy—as they discuss their direct pathways from high school to professional pilot careers. Find out what these programs have in common and what makes each program unique. Gain insight into how to help your students land a slot in one of these coveted aviation career programs.
Take an in-depth look at the courses that make up the AOPA Foundation High School Aviation STEM Curriculum. You'll learn directly from the curriculum developers about the topics, hands-on engineering projects, and key learning outcomes embedded in the curriculum. See first-hand how the courses are structured and sequenced to provide rich STEM education and aviation career and technical education experiences that prepare students for careers in piloting, drone operations, and other aviation professions.
You want to start an aviation program at your high school. But where do you begin? What are the steps to plan for, present, gain approval, and launch a high school aviation program? Our AOPA Foundation high school outreach experts will explore all aspects of aviation program development, from initial vision and mission creation to strategic planning. Learn how to develop local partnerships and navigate through state educational regulations. The team will share best practices for building district and community support for an aviation program and how to pitch your plan to your local school board. The session ends with a review of the AOPA Foundation high school application and initial professional development processes.
What does it take to grow a fledgling program into an aviation education powerhouse? This session will follow the journey of the Morris Hills Regional District in Rockaway, NJ, from its humble beginnings at the 2019 STEM Symposium to a multi-school district-wide aviation program. Gain insight into best practices for growing an aviation program from multiple stakeholder groups, including school and district administrators, classroom teachers, industry supporters, and state-level Civil Air Patrol leaders. Meet program graduates who are now pursuing pilot careers in collegiate aviation programs.
Do you have to be in perfect health to be a pilot? What are the medical requirements? What if you need medication? Are there any disqualifying medical diagnoses? Help your students navigate their options with the answers to these questions and more. In this session, an AOPA medical certification expert will delve deep into the process of obtaining medical certificates, potential obstacles for high school students, and strategies for overcoming disqualification and seeking special issuance. Topics will include classes of medical certificates, flying limitations and privileges associated with each class, scope of exam for each class, the do's and don'ts of the medical certification process, medical conditions and medications, and tips for obtaining special issuances.
Drones are cool. Drones are "in." But how do you make a drone classroom work? In this common-sense, practical session, you'll hear directly from veteran classroom teachers and the AOPA Foundation's resident remote pilot and drone curriculum expert, Michael Hangartner, about topics like drone selection, accessories worth having on hand, drone maintenance, classroom and materials management, and drone lab safety. Learn how to avoid common safety and management pitfalls and ensure that your drone program takes off on day one!
Aviation might not be rocket science, but it is full of math and science. The AOPA Foundation Curriculum is a rich and invaluable resource for teaching aviation to high school students, but beyond the aviation themes, the curriculum is loaded with math and science treasures. While many students abhor traditional math word problems, the desire to fly offers a prime motivation to develop required math and science skills through real-world problem solving. Spend some time with one of AOPA's most experienced Curriculum classroom teachers and his students as they explore and demonstrate the math and science treasures embedded in the curriculum.
Join Jamie Beckett, AOPA Foundation You Can Fly Ambassador for Florida, as he shows you how to start a flying club for high school students. Learn what steps to take, from creating an organization to finding affordable space to obtaining donated tools, equipment, and even aircraft. Hear from students, airport officials, community leaders, and others who have helped launch and grow clubs that give high school students hands-on aviation experiences, from building and repairing aircraft to flying in them.
Would you rather fly a police helicopter or a corporate jet? Do you prefer fixing airplanes rather than flying them? Maybe a job as an air traffic controller is for you. Or perhaps you'd like to manage a bustling airport. There's a lot more to aviation than being a pilot. Discover careers beyond the airline flight deck as you explore a busy general aviation airport.
*Agenda subject to change.
*Agenda subject to change.
*Agenda subject to change.
Hotel Registration Now Open
AOPA has reserved a block of rooms at the Hyatt Regency Orlando Airport (9300 Jeff Fuqua Boulevard, Orlando, FL 32827) from November 13 through 17, 2021 at a special group rate. Make your reservations now to guarantee your room rate.
Please note: The Hyatt Regency Orlando Airport is conveniently located within the Orlando International Airport (MCO). Ground transportation will not be required if you choose to stay at the symposium hotel and fly into MCO.Hotel Registration
To purchase specially priced Disney Meeting/Convention Theme Park tickets, please call 407-566-5600 or CLICK HERE. Tickets are valid 7 days pre, during, and 7 days post meeting dates. Please note the cut-off date for advanced purchase savings is November 14, 2021.
Information about pre-conference tours will be available soon.
Through Sept. 15
Beginning September 15
CANCELLATION POLICY: All cancellations are required to be made in writing for any applicable refund to be processed. No refund will be provided for cancellations received after Friday, October 15, 2021.
Commercial pilot and CFI Stevie Triesenberg is inspiring the next generation of pilots through her social media content. She spends much of her free time flying her 1952 Beechcraft C35 Bonanza and sharing her flights with her more than one million social media followers. She goes by @planegirl on TikTok and @bayflight on Instagram. When Stevie was in high school, she saw a photo of someone with a small airplane on her Instagram explore page. She had no idea that small airplanes even existed and never thought she could go learn to fly. Learning to fly was always in the back of her head until the summer of 2018. She had an engineering internship that allowed her to fund her training and decided to give it a go. Stevie fell in love with flying, and the rest is history. When she’s not flying, she works full-time as a mobile software engineer.
The AOPA Foundation is actively monitoring the incidence of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). We have been asked how COVID-19 may impact the upcoming AOPA Foundation High School STEM Symposium. The AOPA Foundation will meet or exceed all local, state, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) requirements regarding large gatherings and preventing the spread of COVID-19.
At this time, our upcoming AOPA Foundation High School STEM Symposium will take place as planned, in person and virtually. If you are sick or feel you are getting sick, we ask that you please stay home. The CDC recommends that people in high-risk groups consult with their healthcare provider about attending any large gathering. If you decide not to attend in person, we encourage you to attend virtually!
California Aeronautical University (CAU) is a world-class training facility connected to Bakersfield International Airport in beautiful Southern California where students live, eat, and breathe aviation. The University offers aviation-related degree programs and training for students seeking careers as professional pilots and aviation business professionals. In this immersive aviation environment, CAU students gain valuable experience you just can’t get from off-airport instruction. Students also benefit from CAU’s growing relationships with industry partners, which can provide a direct pathway to a professional aviation career. Financial aid and scholarships are available to those who qualify. Tour the campus at calaero.edu
Check back often for updates. Exhibitors include, but will not be limited to: