University of Illinois plans to shut down its 50-year old aviation program
July 18, 2011
University of Illinois officials have decided to shut down its Institute of Aviation after 50 years, pending approval by university trustees this week.
The program, at the university's Urbana-Champaign campus, has fewer students than any other program on campus. It came under review last year as the university looked at ways to cut costs. Some had argued to keep the unique program, and the Faculty Senate voted 57-54 this year against cutting it.
The proposal before trustees says the institute should be closed and its undergraduate programs discontinued "because of its high cost, declining enrollments, adverse impact on the campus academic profile, and the relative weakness of the Institute's connection to the central mission of the campus.
The program trains and certified pilots and offers degrees in aviation human factors, a psychology-based discipline that focuses on improving flight safety.