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Marshall, West Liberty to announce agreement for aviation program partnership

Marshall and West Liberty universities will announce plans for an additional location of Marshall’s Bill Noe Flight School at West Liberty University’s campus on Thursday, June 29, at 1:30 p.m. at Wheeling-Ohio County Airport, located at 30 Point Road, Wheeling, West Virginia.

Classes at West Liberty University are expected to begin in the fall of 2024.

“This new location will be fully populated with the technologically advanced Marshall University airplanes and Marshall’s top tier flight instructor force and will further enhance Marshall’s mission of producing high-quality talented aviators to enter one of the most sought-after professions available today,” said Bill Noe, Marshall’s chief aviation officer. “This is significantly important as we open this industry and create ‘Line of Sight’ to the opportunities that aviation has available to the very talented pool of professionals from West Virginia.

“We are looking forward to collaborating with West Liberty and working towards making the state of West Virginia synonymous with Aviation anytime it’s mentioned and continue our deep-rooted traditional roots in this field by creating the platform to be the premier location for training future aviators in the country.”

Noe said that additional sites are in the works and will be announced in the near future. He added that Marshall’s aviation program already has been recognized for its emphasis on “safety first,” which will never be compromised for any reason, as well as state-of-the-art technology, facilities and capabilities. The program also promotes student development beyond certifications by emphasizing professionalism, service, integrity and attitude.

“We are happy to be partnering with Marshall University and are looking forward to building West Virginia into  the premier aviation state. This will be a great opportunity for students in our area to be placed in high-need careers,” said West Liberty’s interim president, Dr. Cathy Monteroso.

Marshall’s aviation program officially opened in the Fall 2021 semester and will help meet the nation’s projected significant need for commercial pilots over the next 20 years. Its ground and flight courses lead to a series of FAA certifications and prepare graduates to become commercial pilots.  When in full operation, the Marshall University Bill Noe Flight School is expected to enroll more than 450 students and produce some 80 commercial pilots annually.

Marshall’s aircraft fleet includes the highly advanced Cirrus SR20 aircraft. Marshall uses these single engine, state-of-the-art planes because they are ideal for preparing up-and-coming aviators for what they will be flying when out in the workforce. They are fully automated and have a variety of sophisticated avionics, including large display screens; Garmin-outfitted instrumentation; synthetic vision technology; all-digital Bluetooth audio, engine and fuel monitoring; dual alternators; and weather and traffic monitoring systems and navigation. These composite aircraft feature a parachute that will safely lower the plane to the ground. When deployed in the unlikely event of an emergency, the parachute adds a final emphasis to our commitment to safety.