École de l'air
Motto in English
|Type||Air Force Academy, Grande École|
|Affiliations||CDEFI, CGE, PEGASUS|
President Albert Lebrun created the École de l'Air by Presidential decree in 1933. The school's first class began training November 4, 1935. The school's motto, Faire Face ("Overcoming") is a tribute to Capitaine Georges Guynemer, a World War I fighter ace
In 1937, the school moved into still-unfinished buildings in Salon, Bouches-du-Rhône. The outbreak of World War II forced the school to relocate several times from 1939 to 1945, to sites including Bordeaux, Collioure, and Marrakech. It was not until 1946 that the school returned to the now-completed campus at Salon. The school received the Legion of Honor and the Croix de Guerre from President Vincent Auriol in 1947.
Other specialized schools joined the École de l'Air, including the École du commissariat de l'Air, which trains administrative, legal, and financial officers, in 1953, and the Cours Spécial de l'École de l'Air (CSEA), which trains exchange cadets from French-speaking African countries, in 1973.
In 1969, the École de l'Air began an exchange program with the United States Air Force Academy, for eight cadets per school each year.
The school first accepted women in 1976.
Since 2008, The École de l'Air also proposes two mastères spécialisés courses in aviation safety aircraft airworthiness and aerospace project management in partnership with the École nationale de l'aviation civile and the Institut Supérieur de l'Aéronautique et de l'Espace.
- Stéphane Abrial, French General who is the previous Commander of Allied Command Transformation
- Caroline Aigle, first woman fighter pilot in the French Air Force
- Patrick Baudry, retired Lieutenant Colonel in the French Air Force and a former CNES astronaut
- Jean-Loup Chrétien, former CNES spationaut
- Olivier Dassault, French politician, currently serving as a deputy in the French National Assembly
- Léopold Eyharts, ESA astronaut
- Jean-Pierre Haigneré, French Air Force officer and a former CNES spationaut
- Fleury Marius, French aviator
- Francis Pollet, Director of the Institut Polytechnique des Sciences Avancées
- Jacques Rosay, Vice President Chief Test Pilot of the aircraft manufacturer Airbus
- Michel Tognini, French test pilot, brigadier general in the French Air Force, and a former CNES and ESA astronaut