Florida Air Academy

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Florida Air Academy
Florida Air Academy (Melbourne, Florida) 002.jpg
Florida Air Academy main entrance
1950 S. Academy Drive
Melbourne, Florida, 32901

United States
Type Boarding
Established 1961
Principal Melissa Alton
Head of school James Dwight
Grades 6–12, boys and girls
Number of students 300
Campus size 22 acres (8.9 ha)
Campus type Private
Color(s) Blue and white     
Nickname Falcons

Florida Air Academy (FAA) is a private co-educational boarding school founded in 1961 by Jonathan Dwight, located in Melbourne, Florida. Students in grades 6–12 are provided a college-preparatory education with a military-style structure that emphasizes leadership and accountability. There are 300 students and 35 faculty members.[citation needed]


Ernest Kouwen-Hoven built the main building in 1923 as his personal mansion. It is Mediterranean Revival architecture with Art Deco interior. He owned it for one year until selling it to an owner who turned it into the Lincoln Hotel. August J. Rimer, an original owner of the Green Bay Packers, bought it in 1957 and renamed the hotel the Belcelona.[1]

In 1961, educator Jonathan Dwight bought the building and founded the Florida Air Academy. He and his wife, Emmy, patterned the school on the United States Air Force Academy. Today the school continues to be family-run, for the past 25 years by the Dwights' children. James Dwight has been the Academy President for the past 21 years.[1]


The academy is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and the Florida Council of Independent Schools.[citation needed]

In 2012, class sizes ranged from 5 to 20 students, and averaged 13.[1] A.P. classes, Honors classes and Dual Enrollment classes are offered (Dual Enrollment at nearby Florida Tech and Brevard Community College.) A Teacher Help period occurs after school and students are encouraged to see their teachers for help with homework or other questions. A formal "Academic Assistance Program" is in place for students needing additional academic motivation and instruction.[citation needed]

Graduates have had a 100% acceptance by colleges since 1978.[1]

Student body[edit]

In 2012, there were 190 boarding students. Day students were admitted in the 1980s and comprised one third of the student body. About one third are international and come from 22 countries. Girls were admitted in 2005.[1]

Cadet life[edit]

Boarding students live with one or two other roommates, depending on the size of the room. All of the dorm rooms are in the process of being completely renovated.[when?] Each room has beds, desks, swivel chairs and wall lockers. Students are allowed to have a footlocker for additional storage. Boarding students arise at 7:15 a.m. They have breakfast at the dining hall until 8:00. All dormitories are inspected in the morning to ensure cleanliness. Day students must be on campus by 8:45 to attend class at 9 a.m.[citation needed] Students wear polo shirts and shorts or slacks four days a week and the JROTC uniform one day a week. Various opportunities occur during the school year to wear personal clothing, and students may wear their own clothing when leaving campus on the weekend for outings.

The campus consists of a landscaped 22 acres (8.9 ha) and contains the largest collection of historic buildings in Brevard County. It includes a campus store, campus snack bar, outdoor stage and gymnasium, athletic fields and tennis courts. A city golf course is located across the street and several pools are nearby. The school day is made up of seven class periods, with a five-minute passing period between classes. The last class ends at 2:45 p.m. Boarding students are given the option of going home for the weekend, and can take bus shuttles to various parts of Florida, or stay on campus. If the students stay on campus, a variety of activities are planned for the students, including trips to Orlando and Tampa theme parks, visits to the local beach, ice skating, bowling, and trips to the local movies and mall.[citation needed]


  • Boys basketball Class 3A State Champions 1998, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007[2]
  • Boys baseball Class 3A State Champions 1998
  • Boys baseball Class 2A State Champions 1992–1993 season
  • Class 3A State Champion, triple jump, long jump, high jump
  • F.A.A. has had three Olympic athletes and won two bronze medals.[citation needed]

Student activities[edit]

There are several school sponsored activities, clubs and organizations.

Surf Team[edit]

The FAA Surf Club travels to nearby beaches throughout the school year and summer.


This club meets weekly for skateboard outings to local skate parks.

Flight Training[edit]

Designed to meet the needs of the individual, the programs teaches the basics of aviation, and responsibility and decision-making skills. Flight instructors from The Florida Institute of Technology are employed by the Academy to monitor each student's progress. Training aircraft located at Melbourne International Airport. Over 30 single and twin engine aircraft are available for training, including Piper PA-28 Cherokee Warrior, the retractable-gear Piper Cherokee Arrow, and the multi-engine Piper PA-44 Seminole.[citation needed]


Members enjoy Brevard County's two beautiful rivers and compete against other clubs.

Academic Team[edit]

The Academic teams competes against other high schools in a contest of academic and general knowledge.[citation needed]

Model Rocket Club[edit]

The AFJROTC Model Rocket Program develops skills necessary for building and launching model rockets, and furthers knowledge of aerospace and space exploration.[citation needed]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Ryan, MacKenzie (April 24, 2012). "Flying High – Florida Air Academy turns 50". Florida Today (Melbourne, Florida). pp. 1A, 3A. 
  2. ^ a b McCallum (December 31, 2007). Brevard's 100th state title. Florida Today. 
  3. ^ University of Kansas Jayhawks accessed April 3, 2008
  4. ^ "Andy Gonzalez Baseball Statistics (2001-2013)". Thebaseballcube.com. 1981-12-15. Retrieved 2014-04-08. 
  5. ^ [1][dead link]
  6. ^ "Sports | Florida Today". floridatoday.com. 2010-06-21. Retrieved 2014-04-08. 
  7. ^ Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 28°04′13″N 80°36′00″W / 28.0702941°N 80.6000533°W / 28.0702941; -80.6000533