Commercial Aviation

Aviation Facilities

Gibson-GunnThe facilities used by the Commercial Aviation Department include two 15,625 square foot hangars and a flight training complex located a short distance from campus. A 12,000 square foot academic building is home to faculty offices, classrooms and an approved testing center for our FAA Written Exams.

Gibson-Gunn Building

The Commercial Aviation Department is housed in the Gibson-Gunn Aviation Building. The Gibson-Gunn Commercial Aviation Building includes several dedicated classrooms, 3 flight training device (simulator) bays, and departmental and faculty offices.

Flight Instruction Building

The hangar and office complex was occupied in August of 1989, and dedicated in September of 1990. This 27,500-square-foot facility is located at the Cleveland City Municipal Airport. The complex serves as the center for housing the instructional airplanes, and it provides offices and meeting space for flight instruction conferences and national competitions.

A Brief History

In January of 1981, a Commercial Aviation Program was established by the Board of Trustees of the Mississippi Institution of Higher Learning. Delta State would provide courses in general aviation, aviation management, and airway science. The following year instruction began with two facility members and an enrollment of 20 students.

Aviation Flight Ops

Today there are more than 150 commercial aviation majors, of which the majority are flight operation majors. The campus and airport staff has grown to 13 full-time members, including a 16-member flight instructor staff. The aircraft fleet has increased from two single-engine, two-seat trainers and one multi-engine trainer, to 19 single-engine trainers and three multi-engine aircraft, and 3 state of the art flight training devices that are used in our everyday training for students.

In February 1995, the Institute of Higher Learning (IHL) Board of Trustees recognized the quality of Commercial Aviation Department’s undergraduate programs and approved the Masters of Commercial Aviation Degree program.

Plans for an aviation building to house instruction were accepted in August of 1989; today, the building is equipped with the latest in flight simulators and audio visual aids. Funds for this facility were granted to Delta State University by Federal Aviation Administration. It is named after Dr. John C. Gibson, former Dean of the College of Business and for Dr. Jack W. Gunn, also a former Dean.

Airport Flight Operations

On average, 70 percent of students enrolled in the commercial aviation program pursue a concentration in Flight Operations, while the remainder pursue Aviation Management and Logistics. Faculty and students are fortunate to have flight operations located a few minutes from the Flying Okra campus at the Cleveland Municipal Airport.

DA42 L360 Diamond

Our flight training fleet include:

(5) Cessna 172P Models for Private and CFI Training
(5) Cessna 172R Models for Private, Instrument, CFI, and CFII Training
(5) Cessna 152 Models for Private Training
(1) Cessna U206G for High Performance Training
(3) Diamond DA42 L360 Models for Multi-Engine Training
(5) Flight Training Devices (simulators)

All graduates of DSU’s Commercial Aviation Program are Commercial Pilots with Airplane Single and Multiengine Land and Instrument Airplane ratings. Graduates must also earn a Certified Flight Instructor certificate with Airplane Single Engine and Instrument Airplane ratings on top of a Multi-Engine Instructor Licence.Part 141-approved courses include Private Pilot (self-examining authority) {ASEL/AMEL}, Instrument Rating, Commercial Pilot {ASEL/AMEL}, and Flight Instructor {CFI/CFII/MEI}.