The College of Aeronautics (COA) now serves a new flight school in Panama, the Latin American Academy for Superior Aviation (ALAS). The nonprofit institution, sponsored by the international Panamanian carrier, Copa Airlines, is located just outside Panama City. Mike Barker is the project manager for the new contract, which is for one year with potential extensions up to three years.
Florida Tech has made a contractual agreement to provide pilot training and management oversight for the new school, through FIT Aviation. Training, already begun with an initial 40 students from Panama and elsewhere in Latin America, supports the university’s ongoing program in Panama to offer aviation degrees.
The academy has a fleet of six aircraft. Among Copa’s state-of-the art simulators is one that permits students to make the transition from piston aircraft to jet aircraft, allowing the student to grow accustomed to high speeds and the complete checklists for the Boeing 737 and Embraer models.
“The new agreement fills an important niche in two ways. We are helping to provide a high-quality source of pilots for Copa, one of Latin America’s biggest and best airlines, and we are supporting our own degree programs with flight training,” said Vice President for Aviation Programs Ken Stackpoole. “This expansion of flight training in Latin America also fulfills one of our strategic goals.”
More information is available at www.copa.com.