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Auburn, Marion Military Institute join forces to prepare future aviators

A partnership has been formed between Auburn University’s School of Aviation and the Marion Military Institute: Marion is now an official feeder school for its professional flight and aviation management programs, according to Auburn.

“The idea for the collaboration came about in 2017,” said James Birdsong, chair of Auburn’s Aviation Management Program.

“Building on the idea began quickly after our initial meeting but slowed as we reorganized the aviation program that same year to accommodate 20% year-over-year growth, followed by the pandemic which again interrupted our ability to focus on this effort,” Birdsong said. “We began working on the collaboration again in 2022, which resulted in the signing last week.”

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“It’s a positive alignment between the two institutions and will help feed the pipeline of students entering our Professional Flight and Aviation Management programs in the School of Aviation,” said Neal Reid of Auburn’s Office of Communications and Marketing.

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The program has grown to more than 700 students and is led by James Witte, a Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award winner, whose career spans more than 65 years.

Marion Military Institute is one of four military junior colleges in the country.

Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.

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