We created the STEM Aviation and Space Education (AVSED) Outreach Program in 1961 to prepare and inspire the next generation of skilled professionals for the aviation/aerospace communities, using science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) based programs.
The Early Years
In 1935, the Department of Commerce Bureau of Air Commerce (FAA's forerunner) began working with the National Education Association (NEA) to define and promote aviation education.
Over several decades, many government agencies supported aviation education through efforts and initiatives. One of the most notable efforts took place in 1958 when the Federal Government established the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and provided more resources for aviation and aerospace education.
The Father of Aerospace Education
When Dr. Mervin K. Strickler, Jr. joined FAA as its aviation education specialist in 1960, he was nicknamed the "Father of Aerospace Education" for his tireless work of promoting aviation education and developing partnerships and programs. Under his guidance, we increased our advocacy of aviation education and gained legislative authority for educational activities.
In 1976, President Gerald Ford signed Public Law 94-353, the Airport and Airway Development Act Amendments, which, among other items, mandated the FAA aviation education program.
With the tremendous support of our program partners, our STEM AVSED program continues to reach communities across the U.S. and beyond to provide expertise and resources on civil and commercial aviation.
From our Aviation Career Education Academy and science fairs to guest lectures and hands-on workshops, our STEM AVSED program blazes a path to high-flying careers in aviation and aerospace.