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Junior ROTC cadets take flight at ASU

July 01, 2005

This June, 100 cadets from the Western United States and Pacific Rim area attended two Junior Air Force ROTC Honors Camps at Arizona State University. The camps, offered for the second year at the Tempe and Polytechnic campuses, are designed to give the young cadets high-tech educational opportunities through hands-on curriculum and visits to air and space operational units, research labs, aerospace industries and college campuses.

"The faculty and staff of the Aeronautical Management Technology Department and Mesa Pilot Development are proud to host the honor camps," said Dr. William McCurry, Chair of the Aeronautical Management Technology Department at ASU’s Polytechnic campus. "These cadets are highly motivated, skilled problem solvers, dedicated, respectful and professional in all respects."

Students attended presentations where they learned about aerodynamics and flight planning, and they disassembled and reassembled a small portion of an airplane engine. The cadets also learned about the effects of high altitude on the human physiology and how to recognize the signs of hypoxia, the lack of oxygen to the brain that can happen when the oxygen systems of an aircraft malfunction or the aircraft experiences a loss of cabin pressure.

The highlight of the camps were the cadets performing pre-flight inspections of the aircraft, then flying Piper Warriors, with the assistance of Mesa Pilot Development instructors. Two cadets flew in each aircraft, and MPD instructors talked them through a takeoff and landing.

"This has been a rewarding experience for both the cadets and those of us who had a chance to get to know them. They have very promising futures," said Mesa Pilot Development President Peter Hayes.

Sophomores, juniors and seniors in the Junior ROTC program are chosen for the honors camp based on a minimum GPA of 3.0, demonstrated leadership qualities and enrollment in college-prepatory courses in math and science. Less than one percent of cadets in the Junior ROTC program is selected to attend one of 10 camps around the country.

For more information about the honors camp and the ASU Aeronautical Management Technology Department, contact Dr. William McCurry at (480) 727-1998.