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Flying Bobcats take bronze in regional flight competition, set course for nationals

Jeff Zidonis | Oct 5, 2015
NIFA award

Flying Bobcats take bronze in regional flight competition, set course for nationals

Jeff Zidonis | Oct 5, 2015

Ohio University’s Flying Bobcats placed third overall in the 2015 National Intercollegiate Flying Association’s regional SAFECON aviation competition last week in Columbus, qualifying the team for nationals, which will take place at Ohio State University’s KOSU airport in May 2016.

“I’m very proud of the team’s performance, especially in the flying events where we had at least one competitor place in the top five,” team coach and the Russ College of Engineering and Technology's Assistant Chief Flight Instructor Derek McVicar said.

Competing against teams from Ohio State University, Kent State University, Bowling Green and Western Michigan, OHIO placed second overall in the four flight events and fourth overall in the five ground events.

Team Captain and aviation flight senior Daniel Rosenberg placed second in the top pilot award and was the third overall top scoring contestant. Aviation flight and aviation management senior Colleen Thompson placed as the third top female scorer. Rosenberg and Thompson’s best finishes came in the short-field approach and landings, where they placed second and sixth overall, respectively.

“As an individual, I feel like I've never done better, and as far as the team is concerned, I was very proud of our accomplishments,” Rosenberg said.

Aviation flight senior Trent Lindsay, who placed second in flight navigation and was the sixth top scoring male contestant, felt that the results were a sign that the team’s hard work paid off.

“We as pilots spend years learning about our trade, and this is the time when we finally get to put everything together and go against people who love aviation as much as we do,” Lindsay said.

Other notable individual finishes included aviation flight senior Corey Fisher, who placed first in power-off landings, and aviation flight sophomore Rebecca Sedlak, who placed as the fifth top female scoring contestant.

McVicar said the event is not only a competition between schools, but it’s also an opportunity for networking and developing decision-making skills the students will use throughout their careers, a fact of which students like Rosenberg are keenly aware.

“Many regional airlines and other aviation employers use SAFECON as a recruitment event,” Rosenberg said. “While still at school, though, the flight team allows me to channel my passion into a competitive avenue to showcase my flying abilities.”