Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University
|Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University|
|Motto||"Real Education. Above all."|
|Established||In 1926 as Embry-Riddle Flying School.|
|President||John P. Johnson|
|Academic staff||3,351 (2013) |
|Students||31,931 (2013) |
|Location||Daytona Beach, Florida, and Prescott, Arizona, USA|
|Colors||Blue and Gold|
|Mascot||Ernie the Eagle|
Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University (also known as Embry-Riddle or ERAU) is a non-profit private university in the United States, with residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Florida and Prescott, Arizona, and a "Worldwide Campus" comprising global learning locations with five modalities of education delivery, and online delivery distance learning designed for students from high school graduate level up. Called "the Harvard of the sky" in the subtitle of an article in Time Magazine in 1979, Embry–Riddle's foundations go back to the early years of flight, and the University now awards associate's, bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees in various disciplines, including aviation, aerospace engineering, business, and science.
The seed that would become Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University was planted on December 17, 1925 (exactly 22 years after the Wright Brothers' first flight), when Talton Higbee Embry and John Paul Riddle formed an aircraft dealership named the Embry-Riddle Company at Lunken Airport in Cincinnati, Ohio. Embry was a wealthy aviation enthusiast who financed the venture and served as the company's president. In 1926 (the date shown on the university seal), the company opened the Embry-Riddle Flying School, which grew rapidly. On December 17, 1927, the company established Cincinnati's first regular airmail service, running to Chicago. In 1929, the newly formed Embry-Riddle Aviation Corporation sold a controlling stake in itself to Aviation Corporation (AVCO), which phased out the Embry-Riddle Flying School in the fall of 1930. Shortly after, AVCO became American Airways (the predecessor of American Airlines), and by 1932, the Embry-Riddle Company was gone.
In 1939 Riddle contacted Embry with a view to getting back into training pilots, but Embry was not interested. Riddle, now living in Miami, Florida, found a partner in John G. McKay and his wife Isabel. Keeping the Embry-Riddle name, they re-established the Embry-Riddle School of Aviation, partnering with the University of Miami to provide flight training under the Civilian Pilot Training Program, increasing the number of pilots immediately preceding World War II. The Embry-Riddle School of Aviation expanded rapidly, and soon moved to the former Fritz Hotel.
Riddle and McKay also formed the Riddle Aeronautical Institute at Carlstrom Field, in early 1941 for the purpose of training pilots for the United States Army Air Corps (the U.S. Air Force did not yet exist). A separate division of Embry-Riddle provided technical training in maintenance and metal work. Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Embry-Riddle and its various divisions expanded rapidly to train aviators during the war, and the Carlstrom Field facility trained pilots for the Royal Air Force, while nearby Dorr Field prepared pilots for advanced training with the U.S. Army Air Forces.
Embry-Riddle quickly exhausted the market for flight training. In late 1943 Brazil’s Air Minister requested Embry-Riddle establish a flight school in São Paulo, Brazil, to provide Brazilian cadets with technical instruction. By early 1944, Escola Técnica de Aviação had been established and provided basic, aircraft, engines, and instrument departments. In 1944 McKay purchased Riddle's share of Embry-Riddle as Riddle chose to remain in Brazil.
Development into a university
Following the end of World War II, the McKays continued the business of training pilots. After John McKay's death in 1951, his wife Isabel McKay led the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical Institute. The school endured financial hardship, but continued to operate in Miami. Isabel McKay suffered a stroke in 1961, and in 1963 sold the school. That same year, Jack R. Hunt was named the first president of the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical Institute. ERAI continued the training of pilots and mechanics in Miami until April 1965, when Hunt moved the campus to its current home in Daytona Beach, Florida.
Embry-Riddle's move from Miami was carried out with money and trucks borrowed from a group of Volusia County civic leaders known as the Committee of 100. The school was packed into trucks and moved nearly overnight. Known as "Operation Bootstrap", the move was accomplished with the help of the Daytona Beach News-Journal, which supplied the trucks.
Hunt headed a large expansion of Embry-Riddle, including the purchase of a second campus in Prescott, Arizona, in 1978. Embry-Riddle purchased the former campus of Prescott College, which closed abruptly in 1974 from financial hardship. Hunt served as president until his death on January 7, 1984. Hunt was followed by Lt. General Kenneth L. Tallman, who, in his five years as president, formed Embry-Riddle's first graduate program. Tallman also added undergraduate degrees in Engineering Physics and Electrical Engineering.
Embry-Riddle's third president was Steven M. Sliwa, who presided over the university from 1991 until 1998. Sliwa oversaw the largest expansion in Embry-Riddle's history, according to the ERAU website, developing new majors and a capital expansion in excess of US$100 million. This included the ICI Center (fieldhouse), Lehman Engineering and Technology Center, Capt. Willie Miller Instructional Center and Student Village on the Daytona Beach campus. Sliwa was followed by George H. Ebbs, who served as president until November 2005.
Ebbs expanded the university into several affiliate programs and was president during the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center buildings and the Pentagon. Following the attacks, federal investigators thought that the school might have trained at least one of the aircraft hijackers, but after a short investigation it was found that ERAU had no involvement in the flight training of the terrorists. A former student who had the same name as one of the hijackers was found to have no connections to Al-Qaeda.
During his tenure as president, Ebbs expanded Embry-Riddle into non-traditional university projects, such as Embry-Riddle's Commercial Airline Pilot Training program (CAPT program), which was sold in 2006. Ebbs also entered the university into a five-year contract with The United States Air Force Academy for Embry-Riddle to provide flight training for its cadets in 2002.
The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award degrees at both residential campuses as well as through Embry-Riddle Worldwide at the associate, bachelor, master, and doctoral levels. The engineering programs are fully recognized by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). Programs in Aviation Maintenance, Air Traffic Management, Applied Meteorology, Aeronautical Science, Aerospace & Occupational Safety, Flight Operations, and Airport Management are all accredited by the Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI). The bachelor amd masters degree programs in business at worldwide and campus are accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP). The programs in Aeronautics, Air Traffic Management, Applied Meteorology, and Aerospace Studies are certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Daytona Beach, Florida campus
Embry-Riddle's largest residential campus (185-acre (0.75 km2)) and academic headquarters has been in Daytona Beach, Florida since the move from Miami in 1965. Built adjacent to the Daytona Beach International Airport, the campus is connected to an aircraft ramp owned by the university for flight training. The main campus consists of an aviation complex, academic quad and residence halls surrounding the student center and Jack R. Hunt Aviator Park. Athletic facilities and the ICI Center are at the east end of campus.
Embry-Riddle's Daytona Beach campus has one of the most extensive Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) programs in the United States and the nation's largest Air Force ROTC program. The ROTC program frequently wins national competitions. The engineering physics program at the Daytona Beach campus is currently the largest undergraduate engineering physics program in the country and the only one specializing in aerospace.
The Daytona Beach campus sponsors 16 intercollegiate sports. The Eagles are members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and compete in The Sun Conference. Embry-Riddle's athletics are directed by basketball head-coach Steve Ridder. On October 2, 2006, Ridder was named NAIA National Athletic Director of the Year. Ridder led the school to its first national title in any sport in 2000, in basketball. In 2013, the men's tennis team won their first national title. In addition to the two team national titles, the eagles have many individual national champions. Since 2005, 4 women and 2 men have won individual national titles in track and field, as well as 3 men for tennis. Many of the individuals were 2 and 3 time repeat champions. Additionally, 1 women's and 2 men's tennis duos have won national doubles championships. In all, the eagle's have won 20 individual/doubles national titles from 2005 to 2013.
Prescott, Arizona campus
Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University-Prescott opened in 1978. The University's campus in Prescott, Arizona, is 100 miles north of Phoenix. The campus has an enrollment of about 1,850 students and covers 539 acres. The flight training center is at nearby Prescott Love Field Municipal Airport.
Facilities at the Prescott Campus include the Aerospace Experimentation and Fabrication Building, a wind tunnel lab with one supersonic and four subsonic wind tunnels, the aviation safety center with an accident investigation lab, library, the 48,000 sq ft. academic complex, the engineering and technology center, chapel, dining hall, student union and residence halls.
Total fall 2013 student enrollment at the Prescott campus was 1,800 students, including 51 graduate students.
The Prescott campus offers the only Global Security and Intelligence Studies program in the US.
Embry-Riddle's two Air Force ROTC detachments form the largest university-based Air Force commissioning source in the nation. Embry-Riddle's AFROTC detachments also produce more commissioned officers, more pilots and other rated officers for the Air Force than any other institution in the nation except the Air Force Academy. Army ROTC also operates a large detachment on the Prescott Campus.
The Prescott campus is home to the Golden Eagles Flight Team, which competes in the National Intercollegiate Flying Association. Prescott's Golden Eagles Flight Team has won the regional championship for 28 consecutive years as of 2014 and have been the NIFA National Champions in 1993, 1997, 1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2012, and 2013.
According to the ERAU Web site, Embry-Riddle Worldwide campus was established in 1970 and became a global network of more than 150 learning locations in the United States, Europe, Canada, the Middle East, and Asia, including military bases. Embry-Riddle Worldwide also provides a virtual "online campus". U.S. News & World Report ranked Embry-Riddle #5 Best out of almost 300 Online Bachelor's Programs. Facilities with aviation functions are available for students not able to attend a residential campus. Programs of study are offered at the undergraduate and graduate level (as well as certificate and non-degree), including the rare Master of Business Administration in Aviation (MBA-A), ranked #70 Best Online MBA Program (out of about 250). As of 2014, the Worldwide campus was headed by Chancellor John R. Watret, Ph.D.
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