OKLAHOMA CITY – Twenty-five organizations were recently awarded Aerospace and Aviation Education Program grants or contracts totaling over $270,000 from the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission (OAC). The record amount of funds will be used to expose more school-aged children in Oklahoma to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) careers, particularly those in aerospace and aviation. The funding was approved by the Commission at their most recent meeting.
The Commission approved an education contract for the Oklahoma Engineering Foundation (OEF) engineering fair. The OEF Engineering Fair introduces students to the world of engineering, project management, innovation, and robotics, all fundamental elements of an aviation education. Through seven unique competitions, students are given the opportunity to build, create, innovate, and engineer projects, putting hands-on experiences within their grasps. This year, OEF hopes to partner with the FAA to offer a Solar Powered Drone Competition for students. The program would reach an estimated 1,600 students. The requested amount was $10,000 and the agency staff recommendation was $5,000.
“OAC has been a community partner with the Oklahoma Engineering Foundation since 2010 through the aviation education grant program, and we look forward to seeing the progress they achieve with their students,” said Catherine Taber, aviation program manager and aviation education coordinator for the Commission.