[WORLDKINGS] On this day - August 27, 2023 – The 96th anniversary of the official opening of Parks Air College - America's oldest aviation school (1927)


(Worldkings.org) Parks Air College is a college affiliated to Saint Louis University. The school was founded by Oliver Parks, and officially opened on August 27, 1927.

Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology (Parks Air College) is a college affiliated to Saint Louis University (SLU) in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. The school is named after its founder, Oliver Lafayette Parks.

Parks Air College officially opened on August 27, 1927. Parks was America's first federally certified school of aviation, holding the FAA Air Agency Certificate no.1.



Oliver Parks started as the sole flight instructor with two instruction aircraft at Lambert airfield. He bought 100 acres in East St. Louis in 1928, and built five buildings the same year. By 1929 Parks operated 35 Travel Air trainers with an enrollment of 600 students.

The college students manufactured their own series of biplane aircraft, including the Parks P-2A, which became the "hero" of books by author Richard Bach. The college quickly got out of the manufacturing business, selling the P2A rights to Ryan as the Ryan Speedster, and later the Hammond 100.

In 1931 Parks offered an Executive Transport Pilot's course. In the 1930s those enrolled as aeronautical engineers, had to design, construct and test fly their own aircraft. By 1936 the enrollment reached 200 students, with a training fleet that consisted of 49 aircraft including the Kinner Sportster and Lambert Twin Monocoach.



Today, the college is a modern, growing, active part of the university. In 2008, the FAA granted the college $2.25 million to form the Center for Aviation Safety Research. The center is focused on Safety Management Systems, Safety Culture, Maintenance Aviation Safety Programs, Next Generation Safety Assessment, Incident Investigation, Multi-Risk Analysis, and Next-Generation Maintenance and Engineering.


According to Wikipedia

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