Big Bend’s Commercial Pilot Program gets boost with three new airplanes

Photos by the Big Bend Community College Office of Communications


MOSES LAKE – Students in the Commercial Pilot Program at Big Bend Community College will soon have three new aircraft to take to the sky.

Two new four-seat Piper Archers sat in the hangar Wednesday morning with a third plane being delivered later this week.

“Each plane costs about $350,000. They’re paid for by the student lab fees,” program Director John Marc Swedburg said. “When they go fly, a portion of their funds help to run the aircraft but then also to replace the fleet. We always say ‘yesterday’s students will pay for today’s fleet and today’s students will pay for tomorrow’s.”

While instructors have flown the new planes, students have to wait until approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. Swedburg said he’s hoping to have the aircraft ready to fly after spring break.

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